It's been a while since I inflicted a Random Thursday post on you. Sorry; the vacation is over.
- I'm typing this on a Zaggmate bluetooth keyboard linked to my iPad. It's like typing on a computer made for elves. The keys are just enough smaller and closer together to make you think you're doing a better job than you really are.
- "Just enough smaller..." Is that proper grammar?
- The NBC Nightly News ran a story last night about the relatively small amount of legislation passed by Congress this year. According to them, fewer bills were passed this year than any time since 1995. The implication was that this was a Bad Thing and that our congresscritters were lazy and undiligent, whereas I was thinking, "wow...finally something to celebrate!" The less meddling by Congress, the better, but I wouldn't expect NBC to share that philosophy.
- Our company Christmas party was Thursday night. We rented the Cancun Grill, an upscale Mexican restaurant located in a downtown office building (for those who aren't familiar with it), and had a great time. The centerpieces on the tables were a variety of toys, still packaged. Debbie and I had the privilege of delivering those toys on behalf of SM Energy to Midland Fair Havens yesterday, where they'll be distributed among the children living with their mothers at that facility. Fair Havens is a great ministry and I'm happy to know that our company provides support for it (and in other ways besides toy donations).
- During the aforementioned Christmas party, I enjoyed overhearing one of our young engineers share how he'd souped up his kids' motorized (drivable) toy cars. He used deer feeder batteries to double the voltage to the cars' motors, providing enough power that the kids can literally leave rubber on the sidewalk. I asked him if he also upgraded the tires to improve traction; he admitted that he'd actually considered that but didn't follow through with it. Gotta love that engineering tinkering, even if it does give rise to the next generation of street racers.
- Deer feeder batteries?! Who has spare deer feeder batteries laying around?
- Sad news about the death of Harry Potter earlier this week. I didn't know he'd been sick. Plus, you know, he's a fictional character, and that pretty much ensures the end of the book series (although the writers of Dallas didn't let a minor plot element like the death of a primary character slow them down). Still, it's sad to hear about the death of one so young. What's that? Oh...uh huh...I see. Um, never mind.
- One of life's minor mysteries is why the sky is sometimes crisscrossed with jet contrails, and other times the jets fly over without leaving a trace of their presence. There were at least a half dozen in the clear blue sky yesterday morning, including these two (and I also wonder if the pilots see what they're leaving behind and whether they do it on purpose; any fighter jockeys in the audience?).
- I posted this on Facebook this morning, but I want to document it here for posterity (realizing that posterity will likely not fully appreciate my diligence). We have a wonderful new multi-million dollar concert venue with an unwieldy name: the Wagner-Nöel Performing Arts Center (named for the primary benefactors). I think we need a more user-friendly way to refer to the facility in conversation, and I propose we begin referring to it as "the Winpac." Referring to it as "the PAC" smacks of political action committees, and calling it simply "Wagner" or "the Wag" isn't respectful of "Nöel," and vice versa. I'm pretty sure no one will come up with a better idea, so I'll expect all of you to start using the shorthand reference from now on. Thanks in advance for your cooperation. These are important issues and if I don't handle them, who will?