For those not yet in the know....

Last night, Missy and I got engaged!

I took her out to Bricco in the North End, for our 3rd Valentine's day in a row. Our first date was there. 2 years to the day after I met her, I proposed. She was completely surprised.

We're thinking the fall of this year. More to come, I'm sure!

Heartbeat post...

Yeah, I've still got one, and I know that I don't update for shit these days, so here goes.

Things are generally good. I'm feeling positive. Things still going well with my cohabitation partner. Missy went private sector, and has a new job, so she's got a bit more dough coming in, which is nice for me as well.

I finally gifted my early 1990 era Sony 32" monster tube TV to my parents and replaced it with a shiny new one and swapped out the cable box for an RCN HD DVR. So far, so good! Had some issues with captions, but I made my way around them.

Work has been... work. I still like working here, but there have been some bumps in the road lately. My management skills must constantly improve.

The house is feeling a bit cramped lately. For a while I've been kicking around the idea of getting out of the Condo and back into an actual House, to get some more room. I am thinking this spring might be the time. I bought in early 2004, before the prices became too stupidly outrageous, so I'm sure I'll make some money on it. However, with the current state of the housing market, I'm a little leery of what might be happening. Target for the change is likely to list the cond and start looking around March 2008.

The Knee

OK, so another long time no post. I do still read and comment now and then, so I'm not 'away' per se.

I just had knee surgery. Torn meniscus and other assorted not life threatening issues. Feels good right now, but the size of a beachball. Hope to get in there and have him drain the fluid out so I can get some mobility back soon.

Been spending spare time doing various woodworking projects. Dropped this for a long time, but recently my interest has been rekindled. Recent Completion:

Still living with Missy and things are still going well. Took her to Bricco for Valentines Day, which also happens to be our one year anniversary. Got her a little Ipod Mini too. Engraved something sappy on the back, of course.

Illustrator? Or something else?

My girlfriend likes to doodle, and I just dug out my Wacom Intuos3, which I've hardly used, and she's having fun with it.

Right now, all she has is MS Paint though, and that isn't what you'd call 'smart' when it comes to tablet input.

Her birthday is in January, and I wanted to get something nice so she can have more fun doodling. Ideally something that will recognize the intuos and set the 'drawing area' to be the whole pad.

Also, I'd kind of like to give her a wee more functionality than mspaint.exe.

So is Illustrator worth the big bux, or is there something else that will be just as good and not such a blow to the wallet, especially for a non professional?

Back in the U.S.A.

I'm back from my european whirlwind. It was amazing. Far more details to come soon, along with photos once I've trimmed out the private and crappy ones. (May not go that far.)

It was superb. Can't wait to get back to Florence and Venice.

Oh yeah, my girlfriend is moving in with me.


14 days. The countdown begins.

In just 2 short weeks I take off for my European Adventure. The anxiety hasn't kicked in yet, but I'm sure it will soon. I bought a Real Big Suitcase from "Tarjay" (Eddie Bauer line). Never needed a big one before. Longest trip I've ever been on. First time passport user. First time off the continent! Provided you don't count Canada, and I don't, first time out of the country too.

Bought tux for my brother's wedding. Jos Banks had a good deal, and now I'll never have to rent yet still be stylish. Clearly guys have it way better than girls in the clothes department. As long as you buy top quality suit and take care of it, you can wear the damn thing practically forever. As far as I can see, girls get to wear a fancy dress a half dozen times then its so far out of fashion they're social lepers if they keep it. I still have a simple blue blazer I bought right after college.

In the meantime I went to a wedding in Manchester, VT with Missy. This town doesn't actually contain any Vermont residents, just weekend New Yorkers who fill perfectly every NY stereotype you've ever known. Ask me about the girl in the Coach outlet with like 6 bags on her arm and the whiny nasal voice. The wedding itself was quite nice. The food excellent. Music way too loud. Missy got drunk. Fun was had by all.

Work has been busy. We signed the Big Deal. This has the potential to make the company (and indirectly myself) a Big Pile O Cash. Lets not fuck it up! I also had to fire my first employee. I came this --><-- close to throwing up after. I never want to do that again. Seriously. Even if it is the right thing to do, you still feel like a monstrous asshole. Reached my 3 year anniversary at ITA, so I'm fully vested now. Feel free to go public and make me rich any time now!

Tried a bunch of new restaurants (well new to me) lately. Tasca, Dali for tapas. (Dali wins hands down, but we won a business card drawing and have a free dinner coming from Tasca, so they still have a chance to change my mind.) I got taken to the Capital Grille on my birthday. I also ended up with a gift card to same from my sister I have yet to use. Chez Henri is one of our new favorites. Steak Frites following those little rib appetizers is meat heaven. Central Kitchen was also excellent. Temple Bar is fun. (cheese fondue!) And I've been MANY times to New Ginza. They recognize us by name now and don't make us wait long for a table either. Who would have thought I'd become a sushi person?

I bought myself a little Garmin Nuvi 350. I am constantly lost, so it makes perfect sense that it took me forever to get on the GPS bus. I also bought a shed to make it easier to protect my motorcycle this coming winter. No more storing it down in Scituate.

Well thats about it for today's brain dump.

Lego Mindstorms free to some Kid

If you're local, and you have an actual child who is interested in the original Lego Mindstorms construction set, I just found I had one still when cleaning out my basement. You can have it for free, you have to come get it in Watertown though.

The box was a little moldy, apparently it had gotten damp on the bottom at some point, but the inside plastic tray still looked fairly clean. I think it all works fine, it did when I put it away. If you're worried about mold just toss the parts into a big bowl of boiling water with dishwashing detergent and you should be fine.

If nobody with an actual child claims it in the next day or two I'll give it to whomever wants it.

I can probably tag this post with a photo later if I remember.