Beast With A Billion Backs

Disappointing, especially following Bender’s Big Score. While it was certainly funny, it felt like three separate episodes sort of worked together, whereas Bender’s Big Score, while it had a lot of plot elements to it, felt more cohesive. Fortunately, the commentary track helped worked out the bitter sting of my dismal reaction.

The Supreme Court Gun Ruling

When I made the decision to move to Washington, D.C., I made it based on a variety of reasons: the desire to live in an urban area, the desire to be able to make use of an excellent public transportation system. Frankly, keeping my handguns wasn’t high on my list. Truthfully, they spend most of their time locked in my gun cabinet. I was planning on selling them, now, I don’t have to.

For the last week and a half, I’ve been checking CNN.com every day for news on the Court’s rulings: apparently, they have a sense of the dramatic. This was easily the most anticipated ruling, and it came on what I believe is their last day before adjourning until October.

Pretty much, I think the ruling is a good one. Reasonable restrictions on gun ownership are okay — I think everyone will agree that convicted felons shouldn’t be able to legally own a gun — but denying a law-abiding citizen the ability to defend themselves with a handgun class of firearm isn’t in the government’s purview. There’s nothing in it about carrying concealed firearms, and in this city in particular, there probably won’t be much: at my part-time job, I walk past a Secret Service office on my way to the Metro, for example, and our store is like, what, four blocks from the White House?

Of course, the ruling isn’t the end of everything, there’s still some legal wrangling to be worked out. Adrian Fenty, DC’s — well, and mine, now — mayor has given the MPD twenty-one days to come up with a gun registration program. There’s more coverage on what this means for the city on The Washington Post, one article in particular, about the city’s attorney general commenting on what steps the city would take to comply if the ban were found unconstitutional, I can sadly not find. Essentially, it involves the police setting up a registration program and the District’s lawmakers coming up with some legislation determining who can own a handgun and how they would go about doing so.

However, I did enjoy reading one columnist’s take on the ruling, Raw Fisher.

I think, to be on the safe side, I’ll get in touch with my old boss’s gun-store owning buddy and see if he can keep my handguns on consignment until the legalities in the District are squared away. So far in my life, the only time I’ve spent in a police cruiser has been voluntarily, and I’d like that not to change. Because, see, I’m law abiding.

Highlander: The Game

Looks cool; might need a PS3.

By my count, this makes five Immortals born of the Clan MacLeod*: Connor, Duncan, Quentin (The Animated Series), and Colin (The Search for Vengeance).

*Okay, admittedly, Colin was “adopted” into the Clan MacLeod late in his life …

More Apartment Touring

This is what my apartment looks like from the outside:

exteriorwindows

This is my kitchen:

kitchen

This is my kitchen’s “nook”, and that is Tippy saying, “How’d — and why’d?! — I get up here, anyway?”

tippywindow

You know it’s a classy studio apartment when it comes with a foyer:

foyer

Ze Living Space:

livingspace1

living2

DC

Why can I only connect to the unsecured wi-fi on days I don’t work my day job? I dunno, just how it is. Mine comes this Thursday.

Furniture rearranging is fun! Maintenance guy who knows how to install shelves into a brick wall: excellent!

Mental note: when coming home, start using Cleveland Park Metro: too many college kids looking to get drunk at Woodley Park.

People who yell at me at the Metro station where I’ve been parking my car because they think having to pay $10 for a Smartrip card is ridiculous: hey, I don’t make the rules, you asked me how to get out of the parking garage and I told you.

Buying a Smartcard for the laundry room: are you serious?!

I Unpack Quick

apartmentnew

So, my apartment can essentially be divided into five distinct areas: the living area, the walk-in closet, the foyer, the bathroom, and the kitchen/tiny-ass-dining-room-too-small-for-a-tiny-table. Seriously, I can’t even open the refrigerator door the whole way. I’ll take more photos later, but I’m planning on hitting the sack shortly. This photo, from the foyer, pretty much captures the layout of the living space. I’ve got to get maintenance to remove the closet door — it’s oversized and can’t open with my furniture layout. On the left, and almost out of sight, is a 2×4 IKEA EXPEDIT unit lying vertical.

You might notice the absence of a television: As it happens, in my frantic rush to prepare for the move, I apparently did not exercise appropriate care unhooking the cheap ass DVD player from the smaller of my two TVs: a 25″, and the one I brought with me (the other is waaaay too big for this apartment). Unfortunately, I discovered tonight that the prongs from the coax cable (that’s what its called, right?) snapped. In my attempt to remove the bad prongs, I, well, let’s just say I’m pretty sure I fucked the TV good. Now, on the bright side, a buddy of mine is an electronical wizard. I think he could have the TV capable of plugging into a DVD player in all of about five seconds. Good news for him, he got married yesterday … bad news for me: he’s waaay out of town for the next two weeks or so.

However, this really isn’t a big deal: even if he can’t fix the TV, hell, I’m hoping to upgrade to an HD flat-screen and Blu-Ray DVD player around Christmastime. And in the meantime, I’ve got my laptop. I wasn’t planning on hooking up for Comcast TV anyway, so really the only big loss is a gain: I keep valuable floorspace in this place.

The View From The Roof Deck Is Incredible

Hey-hey-hey-hey! Hooray for free WiFi, and let’s hope this guy doesn’t password his wireless router anytime soon.

I was at a wedding yesterday, and maybe drank too much. I also apparently forgot to pack aspirin, so I didn’t get a very good night sleep: actually, around 3:30 or so, I said “fuck it” and put together my new bar table.

I just got home after walking south to Woodley Park looking for a CVS: I found one, but it doesn’t open until 7, so I turned around and started back north where I found a 7-11 right across from the National Zoo. Don’t know why I didn’t think to go there first, but I’ve got some (expensive) aspirin in me now, and hopefully the drum-orchestra will die down soon.

On the moving front, I’d like to thank everyone who helped me: everything (and every cat) got here safe and sound. The furniture I’d disassembled has all been put back together and in its proper order. I’ve got a shelf to mount on the wall, and I need a little stand for my TV, but I’ll be able to crack into the boxes and start unpacking soon.

The cats are starting to get adjusted. It didn’t take Tippy long to start exploring, but Guy was another story. The cats came down separately: I didn’t want them in the cargo van, so NPR Junky was kind enough to load them into her SUV. They were in the apartment by 2:30 or so, but when I came back at 6:45 with the cargo van on the second trip, Guy was still in his carrier. After the van had been emptied, I had to coax him out of the carrier. He hissed, and promptly found his way into the closet and under the dresser, where he remained until yesterday afternoon, when he ventured out to sniff around a bit. He’s been exploring a bit, and now that I’ve reassembled the futon frame, he’s spending his free time under there. Tippy’s figured out how to get into the cabinet under the sink. As soon as she figures out how to get out of that cabinet, I’ll feel a hell of a lot better.

Tippy’s standing on the top of the tv, with her front paws perched on the (narrow) windowsill. She likes looking down at the activity in the parking lot, and, when I’ve got the window open, she looks straight ahead out towards the Aviary and the Zoo. The “dining room” isn’t big enough for the bar table (well, not if I want to eat at it), but that’s okay: the living space is big enough for it. I’ve got a bookshelf in that area now (and empty boxes), and I’m going to bring in a little nightstand to put up against the window as a cat perch for my furballs. I’m hope they’ll appreciate that.

The ceiling in this place is high. I can’t find my tape measure, but I’m guessing this is at least a foot higher than my last place.

Also: the view from the roof deck is incredible. Pictures coming soon.

Wow

I moved into this apartment June 10th, 2003. That’s just a little over five years ago.

Now, the walls are mostly bare. There are stacks of papers to be pitched or shredded. My dining room, and a good chunk of my living room, has been turned into a holding place for my stuff: boxes of books, DVDs, IKEA furniture broken down into its essential elements. My futon has been disassembled, the frame is leaning across the wall, Tippy is sleeping on the mattress, now taking up the bulk of the floorspace. Guy is sniffing the floor and giving me a look that tells I won’t get him into the carrier easily. The cat carriers are stacked atop each other and open.

Tomorrow, I move.

I wish I had more time to prepare. I hope tomorrow goes smoothly. I hope the view from the building’s roof deck is everything I dream it to be.

I’ll know tomorrow.

You won’t: no internet service until the 28th (assuming I can’t find someone’s free wi-fi to hijack).

I’m very, very excited. I’m very, very scared.

And tonight I’m off to M. Night’s new film, and then dinner and drinks at the Nautilus diner.

Strays

grampshouse

Having visited with my Uncle Bill from my mom’s side of the family, I jumped on the road early today and drove to the Eastern Shore to visit with my dad’s older brother. He’s got a house on the edge of what used to be the southeast corner of my grandfather’s farm. Nice place: old mile markers from the Baltimore/Washington railroad adorn the drive, there’s a pool, and an extended shed for extra parking. In addition to all that, my old grouchy Uncle Bill has eleven cats.

I haven’t been down to the farm — or to Bill’s place — in several years. I stopped by the farm just before my grandmother’s funeral in March of ’06, but I didn’t have the opportunity to go to his: actually, I think the last time I went was the summer of ’05. He didn’t have 11 cats — maybe like five or six. “Two are more than enough,” his wife keeps repeating what he said when they took in their first two strays, but before I left, we were all sitting out on the back porch, and the very imaginatively named (and still relative new arrival) “White Cat” (yes, there is also a “Black Cat”) curled up on his lap and purred.

whitecat

Bill and I took the old John Deere Gator out and motored down to the old homestead. That’s it at the top of the post, looking very rundown. It’s been essentially abandoned for about five years. Bill brought the key and we were able to go inside. It’s very depressing: so many really great memories from this old house, and here it was: rotting floorboards, crumbling walls, dead birds, critters.

There’s new life not too far away: Bill’s stepdaughter and her husband built a house just past the south field. Today was the first time I saw it, and I sort of suspect it will always look out of place to me.

I was worried I’d hit a lot of post-beach traffic coming back from the shore, but I guess I left early enough, and wound up making great time.

Nice View

sox

My Connecticut-based Uncle Bill came to town with his family for the O’s v Sox game Friday night. He was very excited about Manny’s 500th homer — out of the group of us (him, my two cousins, me, my dad, my sister), he was the the only one genuinely excited. Of course, being the good sport I am, I did stand to applaud*.

*This was an act of self-preservation: I think I was one of maybe six people in section 76 wearing anything with an Orioles logo: everyone else wearing logo-wear (uncle included) wore Boston.