Johnny Vidacovich Trio

I went to the office for about noon today. On the way to Metairie we stopped at Winn Dixie for some bottled drinks, the bank and the new office in Mid City which finally looks to be about ready to open. It looks like the installation of fixtures is all that remains to be done.I had very little work to do today. Only two discharge reports justified my presence for six hours. Most of my time was spent with headphones on and a game of FreeCell, or typing this log. We left for the day shortly after six.Dad dropped me off on Frenchman St. This evening, I went to Snug Harbor with Andrey for dinner and the 8 o’clock set. I hadn’t seen him at length is quite a while and he wanted to catch up to this seemed as good an idea as any. I met his there at seven. Over dinner we mostly discussed cars and what we’ve been up to in the last several months. I had fried shrimp and I think Andrey had the shrimp creole.Immediately after we finished eating we saw the eight show, featuring Johnny Vidacovich of Astral Project and ‘special guests.’ Tonight, Steve Mazakowski, also of Astral Project performed along with Steve’s son, Mike I think… on the bass. His son actually attends the same school as my little brother.While I wouldn’t have called the music bad, I would also be unable to say it was particularly entertaining. Both Vidacovich and Mazakowski are excellent musicians but making interesting music with a drum set, an electric guitar and a bass is obviously a tall order. A piano or wind instrument like, say, Tony Degradi on sax would have made the act so much better. We stayed for most of it but left a little early.After leaving Snug Harbor we stopped in d.b.a. for a drink. I wasn’t planning on staying more than a few minutes but we were there for about an hour and a half until we left at 10:30, when it got too loud to hear our own conversation. Andrey gave me a ride home and I arrived at 11:15. I was more than a little tired but I stayed up for a while to play with a new toy that arrived in the mail earlier today, a Sansa e280.

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Day After Christmas

I was expecting to go to work sometime today but that never happened. Overall the day was decidedly unproductive. I did help mom clean up the garage so she could get her car back in. It had been crowded with trash after moving a lot of empty boxes out of the attic. I watched some TV this afternoon, and later the Firefly pilot with Mom and Dad. That was about it though.

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Christmas 2006

I woke up shortly after nine this Christmas morning. If any breakfast was served, I missed it. We all opened gifts around ten. Luckily all us kids are too old to be crazy enough to get up early for this age old tradition. This year I have Jeff and my parents each a copy of Firefly: The Complete Series, a great show I’ve previously discussed in this log. Dad gave me a Sandisk Sansa e200 series MP3 player. This was a very nice gift, only tainted by the fact that I bought myself one the day before Dad suggested I not buy any gadgets before Christmas. When Rockbox is finally working on this player, I’m sure I’ll have a lot of flattering things to say about it. Jeff and Andrew got iPods. I suppose I would have received one myself but I openly dislike them. I also received some nice books.Later that afternoon, we had a nice dinner with pork roast, sweet potato casserole and a lot of the thanksgiving sort of side dishes. Shortly after that, we loaded up the car and went over the Aunt Dionne’s house to see her, Uncle Larry, Brandon, Grandma Janet, Aunt Doris and Uncle Joe. Unlike some years past there weren’t quite as many people, but there was more than enough noise and conversation. Having sufficiently mingled with family, I spent the better part of the evening there watching the Cowboys play the Baltimore Eagles. Although I have no love for either team, an Eagles win is of great benefit to the Saints in the playoffs. The Eagles won handily.I got some money from the Aunt Dionne and Grandma. Aunt Doris gave me a sweatshirt, same as every year. We left to go home sometime after nine. As I recall I got to bed at a decent hour that night.

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Holiday Season

With school out of the way, things have been quiet lately, even with Christmas fast approaching. I went to the office most days but didn’t work all that much. I might have remembered more had I not waited until the day after Christmas to write this entry. Dad and I went to the Saints game on Sunday, where they lost to the Washington Redskins 10-16, another rather painful game. They were in it for the duration though, unlike the Cincinnati game.Jeff arrived back in town this week for the holiday and didn’t hesitate to be decidedly inconsiderate in his arrival, making Dad and I wait for hours on the east bank at the mall and Dionne’s house after work and then stay the night with friends.I watched a couple of movies this past week: Amores Perros, Wild Strawberries, Diabolique, All the King’s Men and Cowboy Bebop: The Movie.

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Finally Done

The last couple of days have been a bit dull. Dad had me stay home to answer the phone and wait for packages. He was out of the office at a trade show. I killed some of the time playing F.E.A.R., a creepy but very entertaining shooter. The game uses a number of subtle devices to screw with the player’s head. I finished the game on Wednesday.This Thursday I had to get a cab and a bus to Tulane as Dad was gone all day. I had one last class, the final exam for Art and Craft of Television. The exam was pretty easy. I got my Battlestar Galactica essay back. I got an A on it although it was a crappy paper due to the ridiculous requirements the professor wanted. The subtitle of my paper was “A laundry list in sentence form,” as that’s basically what the instructor asked for. That night after I got home I watched The Elephant Man.I was home today as well. I had one last assignment which I completed this afternoon, an essay on an architecture thesis review. I doubt I’ll be getting much of a grade for this as my essay sucked. I didn’t have nearly as much source material as I needed to write an intelligent critique. Mom, Dad and I went out to Eastern Chinese and Japanese restaurant on Manhattan Blvd. for dinner, which was actually quite decent.I watched the mid-season Galactica finale tonight, which was one of the better episodes of the season in my opinion.

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Winding Down

With all but one exam in school to go, this semester is drawing to a close. I had my architecture exam last Thursday. I probably didn’t do especially well as I did not look over the ‘case studies,’ handouts from three classes devoted to a single building. This evening, Monday, I had my history of radio final. It was pretty easy thanks to the study guide we got last week. I’m not sure what grade I’ll be getting in this class. I missed an assignment or two, got a C on the mid-term and I have a feeling the professor is not going to like my research paper. I know I did well on the final exam though, so that’s something. Today, I did not go to work but went to Tulane early instead. There is one last assignment for architecture class. Students were instructed to attend a theses review and write an essay on it. Senior architecture students design some elaborate project and then present their case to a panel of professors. I saw a few of these although I decided to go with the first one which was about accommodating neo-nomads. The concept is intriguing although the presentation itself left a bit to be desired. At the risk of sounding cruel, I did not see one presentation done by somebody that appeared to have an semblance of public speaking skills, which is somewhat odd because students are required to take a course of the subject to graduate from Tulane. To be fair, however, these kids are obviously under a great deal of pressure and have good reason to be nervous about how the instructors will react to their ideas. I understand some reviews are downright vicious events. I can’t end this post without a word about the amazing Saints game yesterday. The bless you boys pounced the Cowgirls for a final score of 42-17. The game was over by the third quarter. I don’t mind saying I was completely shocked to see them play so well against the lauded Dallas team. It’s always nice to see the home team lay down an ass-whooping on national television.

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The Post that Shouldn’t Have Been

Although plenty of things have happened in the last week or so, including the Thanksgiving holiday, I’ve been too preoccupied to update the log� definitely a rare occurrence as things are nearly always resembling tedium. Thanksgiving was rather pleasant this year. Aunt Lauren and Arien came to visit from Florida for a couple days. We also had a neighbor over for dinner. His family was out of town so we invited him to dine with us. I had not met him before but he seems like a pretty decent guy. He is currently in the Air force. The food was great this year, as always. Having not had to cook made it taste even better. That evening, Dad, myself and ‘the kids’ went to see Casino Royale. It was a pretty decent movie. I wouldn’t argue the claim that it is the best Bond movie ever. That Friday, everyone including myself volunteered with the St. Bernard Project. It’s a ‘grassroots organization’ that is rebuilding houses in St. Bernard parish. We drove out to their office in Chalmette where we met the other people that were helping that day. I believe they were nearly all Loyola students and their parents. We went to a house that was already gutted and electrically wired. We spend the day hanging drywall. I don’t believe many of the volunteers had done it before. I know I didn’t. One of the regulars there gave us a lesson on the work involved. It doesn’t seem complicated although long term experience would certainly help. Most of the people there found a singular task to help out. I spent nearly all the day with a drill and drywall screws in hand. We left around 5:30 as the sun went down. There wasn’t any light after dark. Later that evening, Dad, Aunt Lauren and myself went to the Maple Leaf Bar to see Bonerama. They’re a pretty entertaining brass band, although unlike other such groups. It was a pretty enjoyable evening, although I was also ready tired from the day before. This semester is drawing to a close. Final projects and exams were topics of discussion in my classes last week. I didn’t post this week because of a couple papers hanging over my head. One was just an essay for TV class. The other was a research paper for my history of radio class. While the TV paper was a simple laundry list in sentence form, the radio paper was pretty open-ended. My topic was the “Limbaugh effect,” discussing exactly what impact Rush Limbaugh is having on American politics. I had one book which actually explores the matter, unfortunately that was the only one I was able to locate. So in the end I was unable to make any definite conclusion on my topic. That Tuesday, we had a little project in architecture class. It’s basically an abstract map from construction paper. We got some of it done in class but had to finish it at home. We discussed them on Thursday. Last weekend I went to the Saints game versus the 49ers with Dad. We had some pretty decent seats in the club level. The Saints played well against an admittedly dismal team. Both Reggie Bush and Deuce McAlister played great today. Bush had four touchdowns and Deuce rushed for over 170 yards. The final score was 34-10. After work on Monday, Dad dropped me off at the Basin St. Station near the quarter. There was a bit of a field trip in radio class to the home of American Routes, a radio show my professor works for. Only myself and two other students showed up. The professor showed us around the small facility and familiarized us with the production of the show. I found it fascinating that a two hour radio program could be produced within just a little bit of office space. After a bad experience on eBay, I bought another Antec P180 on Newegg. It’s a computer case designed for quiet. Over the past couple of months I’ve been making little upgrades to my computer to try and cut down on the noise, but they didn’t help as much as I’d like. This new case delivered in spades, however. My PC is nearly silent now. Although I’ve been pretty busy in the last couple weeks, I did manage to see a couple movies: The Proposition, Witness, Modern Times, Hulk and The Da Vinci Code.

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Day Off

Dad dropped me off at Tulane a bit early this afternoon so I had time to get some lunch before my afternoon class. Without that much time to spare or an adventurous mood, I just ate at the bubble. While I was there I spoke to Bianca on the phone. She was in town for the holiday and we arranged to meet downtown this afternoon. During today’s architecture class, we watched the rest of “The End of Suburbia.” I was disappointed he didn’t ask the class what we thought of the film as it deprived me the opportunity to state I thought the documentary was a poorly headlined, fear-mongering piece of shit. Class was dismissed early at about 1:20. I just missed a shuttle downtown and the next one didn’t come until an hour later. I eventually met up with Bianca at Wendy’s shortly before three. She wanted to go to a gem and lapidary shop in the quarter so we walked there. I’ve been to the place with her on several occasions. I’ve never bought anything there myself before today. I got my first bit of Christmas shopping done. After browsing around in there for what seemed like an hour, we wandered over to the French Market. I very seldom find myself in the quarter during the day so I haven’t been to the Market is quite some time. At the moment I can’t think of ever visiting there while actually living here. After leaving the French Market we went to Caf Du Monde for a short while to sit down and spoil our dinner. After leaving there, Bianca wanted to go back to the gem shop and we did. I can’t say I was thrilled by the idea. After another 20 minutes in there, Bianca bought $1.64 worth of rocks. After leaving there again we walked to Canal Place. I wanted to see how the mall was coming along and perhaps say hi to Christy if she was working at the theater this evening. We walked through the mall a short while. We went though Saks, which must have reopened rather recently. After leaving the mall we walked back towards Jackson Square to Muriel’s where we had dinner this evening. This was my first time at this particular restaurant. We arrived at about six, it was rather quiet there this evening. I had the Dijon mustard crusted salmon, which was pretty good. As I suspected however, I wasn’t overwhelmingly fond of fish with a cream sauce. Bianca had a pork dish, which was considerably more intimidating than my choice. After dinner we caught a cab home. I wanted to stay out later and hear some music but Bianca needed to be home early. When I arrived home, Aunt Lauren and Arien were there. They were in town for the holiday and staying with us a couple days. Later that evening, I watched Truman.

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Weekend + Monday

The week thus far has had an unproductive feel to it with Thanksgiving this week. There hasn’t been much going on at the office this week, especially since it will be closed Thursday and Friday. Attendance was dismal in both my classes held early this week. This past Saturday was pretty uneventful with the exception of a certain college football game. Dad didn’t go to the Tulane game this week nor did I. They did win against Central Florida though, 10-9. I watched the Michigan State/Ohio State game on TV this afternoon. Beyond the fact that it’s a huge rivalry, my brother goes to Michigan so it was worth watching. Ohio State won, barely. Dad, Andrew and I went to the Saints game this afternoon versus the Cincinnati Bengals. It was not a particularly enjoyable game. Even though the Saints didn’t play too badly, they were killed by three turnovers and lost in spite of over 500 passing yards by Drew Brees, a new record. I worked a couple hours on Monday before going to History of Radio class this evening. Monday night’s session covered public radio, which the professor is intimately acquainted with. We also discussed the paper we’d be writing. Dad picked me up downtown that night.

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Just Another Catch-Up Post

As it’s been quite some time since I posted here daily, I should probably think about altering the name of this log. I originally figured I’d have more to talk about being back in school, but college is back to being routine and I seldom find it worth posting about. I see I haven’t posted much of anything this month, leaving about two weeks to cover. Life has pretty much been par for the course lately with few exceptions. There was the election last Tuesday which was a big deal. I voted but it looks like Congressman Jefferson is going to be reelected anyway. On the national level, I don’t mind saying I was disappointed with the outcome. I was downright bummed Tuesday night. It didn’t take long to feel better because it’s “show me something” time for the democrats and I doubt they’ll deliver. I think a lot of liberals were elected on the premise that they’d get us out of Iraq and that sure as hell ain’t happening any time soon. I’ve been going to work regularly with perhaps two exceptions since the last post. I worked at the west bank several days the past days. Patient flow has been light lately which hasn’t left me with all that much transcription to do. My classes are going fine. Last Tuesday’s was a ‘case study’ of the horrendous Portland Public Service Building. Last Thursday’s class was cancelled which sucked because I was on campus early so I basically blew a whole day just to be at Tulane for my evening class. This Tuesday’s class featured a video of the Millau Viaduct, a strikingly impressive bridge in France. In today’s class, the professor showed a documentary called The End of Suburbia. I didn’t find the much of the movie reflected the title however. I t was pretty much an hour of fear-mongering about the end of oil. After no class the Monday before last, the class gave presentations in ‘History of Radio.’ I spoke about the fairness doctrine, a dead FCC regulation. I think I did ok on it, I was expecting to fall apart mid way through because I didn’t have as a firm a grasp on the material as I would have liked. I finished watching Cowboy Bebop this week, which was a shame as it’s such a great show. I lauded it in a bit more detail in a previous post. I’m gonna wait a while before seeing the movie though. As I have been spending a lot of time watching this show I haven’t seen many movies in the last couple weeks. I ordered a number of computer parts this week in an effort to quiet down my desktop PC. I ordered an Antec P180 case, a new 500 watt Seasonic power supply, a new chipset heatsink and new Yate Loon fans. When I have all this stuff in hand I’ll have a few hours of ‘fun’ rebuilding my computer. I really do enjoy such work, although it often is a pain in the ass. As it’s an expensive hobby, I don’t do it often.

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900th Post – Week of October 30

I worked every day except Wednesday this week. Although I probably wouldn’t have worked that day anyway, I stayed home to wait for a FedEx shipment. I had a couple of tests for classes this week. The History of Radio class mid term was this Monday. I finished first, likely because my essay questions were sparse compared to my classmates. After the Ogden field trip, we had a take-home test in architecture, which I suppose was the mid term. It was the second test this semester. There were two ‘case studys’ in classes this week. Professor Barron spent an entire class on a building: Villa Savoye by Le Corbusier on Tuesday and the Town Hall at Saynatsalo by Alvar Aalto on Thursday. Both structures are interesting, although Villa Savoye is particularly fascinating as it looks like a post-modern home even though it’s 80 years old. This Thursday’s TV class was about television networks. I worked on Friday afternoon and was home in the evening. I didn’t watch many movies this week, as most of the time I reserve for that was spent watching Cowboy Bebop. I did see March of the Penguins, which was surprisingly fascinating, both by the subject matter and the fact that the filmmakers spent a year in Antarctica to shoot it.

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Weekend at the Dome

Dad, Andrew and I went to the Superdome both on Saturday and Sunday this weekend to see Tulane and the Saints play. Tulane’s homecoming game against Army was on Saturday afternoon. There was a decent but hardly overwhelming crowd at the game. Tulane played well and beat Army, although as Army is so bad it’s not exactly a rousing accomplishment. The final score was 38-24. On Sunday, the Saints played the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens are a pretty good team and it showed, the Saints basically got their hat handed to them. Although there were plenty of mental errors to go around, the turnovers really killed the Saints’ chances, with two turnovers returned for touchdowns and one in the Raven’s end zone. It was painful to watch later in the game. Losing isn’t so bad but getting blown out is rough. The final score was 35-22.

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Week of October 16

Another week gone by and not too much happening. I did go to work between classes on Tuesday to help with filing at the office. For the first time since the hurricane, we started work on pulling settled case files for storage, something we used to stay on top of. On Saturday, my architecture class had a ‘field trip’ to the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. We were there to see the building, which my professor, Errol Barron, designed. I’d never been to the museum before even though I’ve intended to go. Overall the building is simple and elegant in both design and purpose. In addition to seeing the museum, we also toured the Patrick F. Taylor Library, which is currently closed and under renovation to be part of the museum. It’s a beautiful old building. In class this past week, we saw slides of the interior after a previous renovation, in which the building looked quite immaculate. This week I started watching Cowboy Bebop with the Remix DVD set. Although I have a general aversion to anime as I usually find it childish and pointless, I decided to give this show a chance because of the excellent jazz soundtrack that goes with the show which I’ve been listening to frequently of late. Bebop is also widely regarded as the best anime show to date so it would have to be worth at least some of my time. To my surprise, I actually enjoy the show. It looks good, sounds good and the stories are actually decent. This week I watched Doctor Zhivago, In the Heat of the Night and Two for the Money.

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Week of October 9th

Another week without log entries which is becoming par for the course. School and work both went by without unusual incident. All of my classes were fine and I worked a few days this week not much though. We moved into the new suite at the west bank office. It’s in the same building but the new one is a lot bigger with eight private treatment rooms. I watched a few movies this week: A Fistful of Dollars, For a Few Dollars More, In the Line of Fire, All The King’s Men (1949), Thirteen Days and Who Killed the Electric Car.

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