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Part 2 – Interstate Courtroom Jesus

Posted by anjilslaire on May 23, 2015

1977 was a big year for him. Star Wars was released, and a Daycare teacher took him & his brother to see it. The toys that were released were the hottest thing going, and they each had $2 to buy an action figure.

By this time, they were being watched after school by a kindly old woman affectionately known as Grandma Milly who was the mother of someone their mother was, uh, dating. One evening Grandma Milly took them for a drive across the I-5 bridge into Portland to Jantzen Beach to buy the action figures from Toys R Us. She dropped them off at the door and said she would be back to pick them up shortly.

They spent what seemed like forever staring at the enormous wall of Star Wars figures. Storm Troopers, Chewbaccas, Darth Vaders, Luke & Leia, Han Solo, there were enough choices that they couldn’t make up their minds. Eventually Grandma Milly showed up, hurried them to choose, and they checked out & got in her car.

As they made their way back towards the freeway from the mall, he noticed a police car behind them on the on-ramp. It’s lights were flashing red and blue.

“Grandma Milly, there’s a police car behind us!” “Oh, they must be chasing someone,” she mumbled, and got onto the freeway in the big old land yacht old women in the 70s drove.

Taking the I-5 back into Vancouver, there were now 2 police cars from Oregon following them on the bridge, and then 2 State Troopers from Washington joined them. The police finally pulled them over outside Esther Short Park, across the street from the local American Legion where his mother was a cocktail waitress (the irony isn’t lost on him in his teen years).

An Officer takes them out of the car and chats them up, talking about their new Star Wars figures while Grandma Milly is put in another patrol car and driven away. Their mother comes out of work and takes them home, none to pleased about missing a night’s work. A couple hours later, however, after they are put in bed, he hears the familiar sound of the front door being opened, closed, and locked. Getting out of bed, he sees that she’s gone back to work and he won’t see her until morning. Again. He never sees Grandma Milly again.

Some time later, she tells him that Grandma Milly was in the the local lounge at Jantzen Beach while they were looking at Toys R Us. When she picked them up she was apparently pretty drunk and swerving around the road. At her hearing she was belligerent to the judge and called them all sinners, and lo and behold, she saw Jesus Christ right there in the courtroom. Another office who was a “Hawaiian fella” also saw Jesus in court and fell down, worshiping Him as well. His Honor didn’t spot him though, and threw the book at her.

With Grandma Milly out of the picture, that was the end of babysitters for him and his brother, and started staying home at night alone while she was working. They were about 7 & 9.



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Part 1 – busy street

Posted by anjilslaire on March 8, 2015

The first memory ever recalled was in a house on a very busy street. The driveway was very steep & short and dumped straight onto a 4 lane road that spelled Certain Doom to a 5 year old like himself if he ventured off the unfenced yard.
Of course, he never hesitated to play right on the sidewalk when the semi trucks went barreling past every day.

His older brother was 7 and preferred to stay inside and draw pictures of the elaborate adventures only dreams were made of, but he couldn’t wait to get outside & roam the neighborhood, hiding in bushes and pretending not to be seen. He practiced this by hiding in the hedge that separated the old rental house he lived in with his brother & their mother and the old church building next door to the right.

He’d learned the priest’s & alter boys’ schedules fairly quickly and would wait for them to file out onto the grounds before sneaking into the building to look around and see what was so interesting about going to church on Sundays for all these people. Apparently this was frowned on as he was caught once by a priest and told to leave. He made a mental note that stayed with him for years: People who go to church think they’re better than others and don’t want to let new people in unless you have nice clothes, or answer questions.

Against the backyard was a fence that separated their  yard from the parking lot of the dentist’s office next door. The office was in a remodeled house on the corner of the block on the left side of their house where he would race his Big Wheel down the steep side street toward Certain Doom Road and cut a hard turn at the last minute, scaring the drivers as they saw a Big Wheel appear out of nowhere seemingly ready to careen right into them.

He spent most of his time entertaining himself like this, or playing with a few other toys since he was pretty much free to do as he pleased. His mother worked at night at the local American Legion as a ‘cocktail waitress’ which was ironic to him as he got a bit older, given the number of men who came over to visit overnight periodically and she would latch the door hook to her bedroom.
He didn’t remember much about his father, except that he was a truck driver in Oregon who didn’t want to see him or his brother, obviously. This wasn’t a concern though, since men clearly aren’t very trustworthy and don’t get to know you except to show you neat tricks to get you to go away and give them some time to get that door latch hooked. The best example of this was the police officer who came to visit, and he dared the officer that he couldn’t put the handcuffs on him since his hands were too small.

Lesson learned: Real handcuffs will indeed fit on a 5-6 year old’s wrists and restrain them. He spent about an hour crying, trying to get them off until the door latch unhooked and it was time for Officer Randy to go back to work. Or home. Or somewhere.

Yeah, the busy street was much more fun than waiting on that door latch.

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Windows 8.1 upgrade howto

Posted by anjilslaire on October 18, 2013

Want to upgrade your shiny PC to Windows 8.1 from Windows 8, but can’t seem to get the Store to offer it?

Open this URL in Internet Explorer, or via win+R :

I’ve upgraded 2PCs and a Surface RT this way.

You’re welcome.

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My Pirate Name

Posted by anjilslaire on May 3, 2013

My pirate name is:
Bloody Harry Vane

Every pirate lives for something different. For some, it’s the open sea. For others (the masochists), it’s the food. For you, it’s definitely the fighting. You tend to blend into the background occaisionally, but that’s okay, because it’s much easier to sneak up on people and disembowel them that way. Arr!

Get your own pirate name from
part of the network

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WinPhone 8 ~3 months in

Posted by anjilslaire on February 9, 2013

I picked up an HTC 8X in red to replace the aging Droid X. So far I’ve been pretty impressed with it. Deep Skydrive integration, Family Room shared calendars, beautiful, smooth OS. I can’t really complain. I definitely recommend getting one.

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Farewell, or – Riveting Tale, Chap

Posted by anjilslaire on September 20, 2012

About 6 months ago, I changed jobs. Left one company for another. There were a variety of reasons I left that aren’t relevant to this post, but I’ve remained friends with several of my former co-workers. I recently ran across my informal resignation mail I sent to my coworkers, including my boss. I thought I’d share it here, to show that parting can be amicable. A few minutes after I sent it that last day, I heard several laughs & chuckles across the cubicles. This was the last email I sent with my former employer’s domain:

Subject: Farewell, or – Riveting Tale, Chap


I just wanted to let everyone know that I’ve decided to leave <Redacted>to join the resistance against the secret Amish militia


I’ve had a great run here and will miss all of my friends, but I hope to stay in contact via my hand-crank OLPC that I’ve bartered for using sickly, unclean goats culled from my new goat farm.


I’m leaving to be a goat farmer.

Because the Amish love goats.


I hope to stay in contact with anyone who finds my thoughts intriguing, and would like to subscribe to my newsletter.

I plan to stay in the loop using the new beta Smoke Signal Protocol being implemented on the twitters. Because that’s OK to the Amish. You know what the Amish say, “Anything under 140 characters doesn’t count.”


As a backup for my hand-crank laptop, I plan to install Linux on a dead badger, as I feel it is the most appropriate and well-hidden solution^^^security theater to avoid detection by the aforementioned Amish.



For those left behind to man  the SecOps vessel, my only bit of advice for all my friends is simply Love Thy Users


Above all else, *DO NOT* abandon all hope like this poor soul

And remember, it’s all really just fun and games


I’ve recorded a brief monologue to remember me by, attached. <insert audio clip of “LEEROY JENKINS!” at high volume>


In closing, I’d like to bequeath some last few things to the following:

To <redacted>, I leave my Deep Moisture Creamy Formula. To keep yourself smooth, player.

To <redacted>, my collection of Forensics manuals on my desk, because he says I’m already dead to him.  And I don’t want to carry those heaving things home on the bus.

To <redacted>, I leave the password to @<redacted>.  Carry the torch, Ninja!

To <redacted>, I leave a bit of advice: If he makes your sammitches well, tell him to keep those shoes off and stay in the kitchen. That’s how I roll, and it works out pretty well.

You can blame <redacted> for all of this. It’s because he didn’t send me any Orange Cupcakes.


And finally to <redacted:Boss>. I leave you with a new & different perspective on things to mull over after you return next week. I did *not* lick your monitor. Uh uh. No sir. That wasn’t me. Nope.

But I can’t verify the condition of your mouse.

Thanks everyone!

Ah, memories… But I still love my new job 🙂

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Windows + Linux= Each has their place

Posted by anjilslaire on May 20, 2012

So a couple months back I repartitioned my desktop to give more drive space to Windows 7, and also to boot first. I’ve also got Ubuntu 12.04 on the secondary partition still in use. I’ve also added a 1TB drive for my media storage.

After much thought I came to the conclusion that Windows made more sense as a daily driver in my house for a few reasons:
I run Xbox 360s on my TVs for gaming and media playback (netflix, youtube, streaming client for my M4Vs, etc). It only makes sense to take advantage of the native compatibility between the two. I’m eventually going set up DVR functionality on my Win7 box so using the 360 as a set top box is natural.
I like to play PC games occasionally. Hooked to my 42″ HDTV makes my PC much more fun, including gaming thats not on the console.

Now, I still use Linux for many uses, including exclusively on my netbook, which lives next to my chair in the living room. I love the ease of updating, raw speed and lack of malware on linux. But I think it’s ridiculous to ignore the advantages of certain platforms for no good reason. Many people will have good reasons. In this case, I don’t anymore.

Huge Disclaimer: I work for Microsoft, so I guess I have no credibility. Think what you will.

Posted in gaming, internetz, linux, mobile, netbook, rants, xbox 360 | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Personal Reboot

Posted by anjilslaire on February 7, 2012

I know I’ve been MIA for months. Really I do. Been super busy IRL, and most of my random commentary has been via Twitter.  But I’m going to try to post more frequently, and include more than just the Linux nuts & bolts of my  free time. This will include my own warped perspective on reality, games, infosec, whatever new toys I’ve acquired, etc. I may have said it before, but it may be time to buckle up.

Lame, I know.

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Droid X VZW Gingerbread updated to .602, solves most problems

Posted by anjilslaire on August 27, 2011

So I got the .602 update to my Droid X from Verizon a while back, and it seems to have resolved most of my complaints with Gingerbread on the DX.

All I know is that the phone doesn’t ever lose its data connection anymore, and seems generally mo’ bettah.

Now my next kick is waiting for Wesnoth to come to Android. Pretty please.

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Droid X Gingerbread update- VZW blames Google

Posted by anjilslaire on June 10, 2011

So I got the Gingerbread OTA update for my DX. In the 10 days I’ve had it, I’ve experienced the following bugs:

2 times: Network data connection dies overnight. In the morning, there is no 3G/1X icon on th phone, at all. Toggling data or wifi on or off does nothing. The only to get the 3G data back is to reboot the phone.
3 times: The phone randomly locking up & rebooting itself.

So, I called Verizon support from my phone (*611) and tell them after getting the GB OTA update I’m losing my 3G. The tech puts me on hold to “look up any alerts for this update.” A minute or so later, she returns, apologizes for the delay, and tells me the following (paraphrased):

*Google* pushed this update prematurely to some devices, including mine. It was not a Verizon update. She assured me it wasn’t anything with my specific hardware, and *Google* is going to push another update in a couple weeks to resolve it.

So now Verizon is saying that Google is pushing updates directly to my phone, instead of Verizon.


In any event, I’ll wait for the next OTA, which I’m guessing Verizon is working on. Gee thanks VZW. I understand when patches go sideways or unexpected bugs creep in. But don’t tell me another vendor is patching my OS on your phone. Really.

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