July 2005

It’s A Small World After All.

While Earl and I were out making new friends this weekend, we ran into a couple of guys from Buffalo. They’ve been together for a while and while were making idle chit chat, one of them mentioned that they were from Jamestown. I mentioned that I had lived in Jamestown once upon a time. Come to find out, he and I used to work together for The Resource Center.

He doesn’t work for The Resource Center anymore, but he was able to catch me up on the people I used to work with and such. It was a fabulous trip down memory lane, and I always did enjoy his company when we were working together.

I sometimes find it so amazing that people’s paths cross repeatedly in life. Absolutely fascinating!

Why Do You Have A Mac, Anyway?

This weekend while we were out playing with our own kind, our neighbor asked us “Why do you guys have a Mac, anyway?”

Oh. My. God.

Luckily, I was so relaxed that I didn’t start a geek tirade anyway. I simply smiled and said, “No spyware, no adware, no viruses. Ever.”

Camping With Flair.

Earl and I are spending the weekend camping at Jones Pond Campground, outside of the tiny village of Angelica in New York’s Southern Tier. Its our first time at this campground, which is a campground for gay men.

I think some people are surprised that there are campgrounds for gay men. There are many across the country, with four within three hours of our home. Back B.E. (before Earl), I frequented another campground, Hillside Campgrounds in northeast Pennsylvania, with my boyfriend at the time. He had a permanent site there, with an old Airstream installed in the woods high up on the hill. It was great.

Earl and I haven’t been to a gay campground since 1997 and this is our first time at Jones Pond. I was a little bit nervous about the whole thing because that’s what I do, but my nerves were quickly dispelled once we got set up and started getting friendly with the natives. Last night we danced like we haven’t danced in years with friends from Buffalo and Rochester. It was all good.

Like Hillside, Jones Pond has many seasonal campers here. The sites are beautiful with the campground on the side of the hill in the middle of the woods. Gay campgrounds differ from others in some ways. For example, there’s a party barn with a big dance floor (complete with video screen) that pumps out high-energy dance music every Friday and Saturday night. It’s BYOB which is fine by me. There’s also a raging bonfire at the same time and since it’s a gay campground, we can actually snuggle up near the bonfire without Mr. and Mrs. Bushamerica flipping a tacky yellow ribbon over the whole ordeal. It’s also clothing optional for those so inclined and there are those that do pick up the option. (And no, I haven’t yet; the whiteness of my skin and the remaining vestiges of my childhood ginger-red hair are sometimes just too much for some to take in.)

The seasonal sites here are elaborate affairs with a judicious use of colored lights, ribbon, Christmas balls, flowers, palm trees, pink flamingos and other gay fabulosity.

It’s very relaxing in a comfortable way, and Earl and I are enjoying the whole experience immensely. We’re making new friends and just being ourselves without any need to put a guard up. This is all good.

Cycling Thoughts.

While I was cycling tonight I spent some time on a new stretch of the local canal trails. The New York Thruway Authority is doing a bang up job on building recreational paths along the Erie/Barge Canal through New York State. When completed, it’ll be a continuous trail that extends from Buffalo to Albany, with spursto various points throughout the state.

Anyways, the trail wanders through the woods along this new section, and the serenity allowed my mind to wander.

If you have a thought, savor it.
If you have an opinion, voice it.
If you have a vision, pursue it.
If you have a dream, realize it.
If you have a passion, embrace it.
If you have a life, love it.
If you have a love, live it.

Those words just floated right through my mind and brought a smile to my lips, a warmth to my heart, and the will to pedal a little bit harder.

I thank the Universe for the privilege.


What an absolutely gorgeous day. After baking through stifling heat for the past couple of weeks, Mother Nature has blessed us with temps in the mid 70s and low humidity. “And a welcomed sigh of relief was heard across Central New York…”

I must say that I feel cute today. I don’t know if its the weather or my mood or what, but I feel confident, handsome and energetic today. Earl and I are going camping at a gay campground this weekend and I admit that I am a little nervous about the upcoming experience. I don’t know why I get nervous, I’ve been to other gay campgrounds before, but its been a good number of years since we’ve been to one. Yeah, like around eight years since we’ve been, but its all good. At least it’s a bear event so we won’t have to deal with the stereotypical “put on a show” attitude that can be rather common in the bars and such. Plus, we’ll see a couple of the guys we met in Danbury this past spring, which I’m sure will be a good time.

The beautiful day has inspired me to dust off my bike and go for a bike ride after work. I’m looking forward to the ride; I’ll have to take cell phones pictures along the canal trails.

Hacker Life.

For the past 18 hours or so I’ve been in this total “hacker” mode and living like the nerd I really am. Not tired at all, I decided to rebuild a computer last night shortly after 10 last night and then installed the beta of Windows Longhorn I have. The rebuild took around 20 minutes, the install took just shy of two hours. Unimpressed with the future Windows Vista, I wiped out the hard drive and am looking at other operating system avenues for that machine. To be fair, the software I had was pre-Beta with lots of broken parts. But if the changes in this release stay for the final version, Windows Vista is going to be seriously fscked up.

Anyways, I went to bed around 12:30 to the sweet serenades of Earl’s snoring, still glistening from the sweat I talked about in my blog entry last night.

This morning I slept until the last possible minute and violated my routine completely. I did not empty the dishwasher. I did not make a lunch. I did not eat breakfast. I did not work out and I did not go for a walk.

I checked e-mail, burned a CD, showered quickly, brushed my teeth and dashed off for work.

Earl is having supper with the bigwigs tonight, I think I’m going to continue my geek activities and have supper at a local internet café.

And chase it all down with a Code Red.

What’s In A Name.

I heard on NPR today that the Global War On Terror has a new name.

GSAVE: Global Struggle Against Violent Extremists.

Talk about trying to make shit shine.


I don’t think there’s much more uncomfortable than this heavy, humidity laden heat wave we’ve been experiencing here. As I type, I’m sitting here in the dark, no lights except that coming from my PowerBook, wearing nothing but a smile. I look down and my skin is just glistening in sweat.

Tomorrow the temperature is suppose to drop 20 degrees and go back to normal.

I’ll probably sit in the front of the computer, wearing nothing but a smile, to celebrate.

Reliability 1, Technology 0.

We’ve been messing around with VoIP for the past couple of months, the latest contender being AT&T CallVantage. VoIP is pretty cool technology, in that it takes phone service, which has been around for over a century, and sends it out over your internet connection. You can take the phone adapter that provides this service, plug it into any broadband connection, and your phone number is active there. Anywhere in the world.

Too bad it didn’t work as planned.

There’s a couple of caveats with VoIP. Unlike POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service), it doesn’t work during a power outage. No internet connection means no phone connection. And since it’s portable, you need to make sure your 911 information is up to date in case of an emergency.

We’ve had CallVantage service from AT&T for about two months. Our home telephone number was transferred to the service. Outgoing calls have worked beautifully with the exception of not needing to dial “1” to dial a different area code and having to dial all 10-digits for all calls.

Inbound calls have been a different matter.

At first, our phone would ring four times and then instead of transferring to voice mail, it would just drop. Callers would get what we call “dead air” and then back to dial tone.

When I had AT&T look into the trouble, they did something so that our phones never rang and all calls went to voicemail.

Not a convenient scenario.

I’ve been on the phone with AT&T Technical Support for a total of 10+ hours over the past week, and when it wasn’t fixed today as I was promised by a Tier III support person, I decided enough is enough. I placed the order to switch back to Verizon.

VoIP is a promising technology and will eventually be the way everyone is connected by telephone. But it’s not 100% there yet. And with family literally scattered all over the globe, it’s important that our phone service is reliable.

Call me old fashioned.