Monthly Archives: March 2004

SXSW Day 1 – Evening Dispatch

Car Fire on West 3rd St., Austin Galvanized Lamp The lovely ladies of Boom Chica Boom

News and Notes from the afternoon and evening of Day 1 at SXSW Interactive:
1) Jeffrey Veen is very tall.
2) There were lots of very tall (over 6′ 4″) at the SXSW Interactive Opening Party at Frog Design. I want to know what water they were drinking as a child…
3) Boom Chica Boom – 2 lovely Austin ladies who are freelance Go Go Dancers.
4) Monsieur Du Rock – the band that Boom Chica Boom dances to… just ok art rock.
5) Frog knows how to throw a kick ass party. In 2001 they had a Long Horn Steer outside that you could get your picture with, this year they had casino gambling. Long live Frog Design.
6) New Mexico raises lots of nice and lovely young men.
7) Too many Accessibility panels, not enough Design, Future of Design, Backend, Where are we going next with Web Design panels.
8) What happened to the Digital Art? At SXSW Interactive 2001, they had a lovely digital art show and panels on digital art. Bring on the artists and the art. Bring on the musicians. Get the creative folk ….
9) Car fires can happen just about anywhere, even on the corner or 3rd and Colorad streets in Austin at 11pm at night.

SXSW Day 1 – The Morning Dispatch

Dispatch from the hotel: I am running late. Imagine that. I did not make it to the 10am panel on the future of Wi-Fi and am now trying to get out of the room for KICK!
The reason I did not make it to the 10am Wi-Fi panel is I felt the need to dump out both of my grab bags and look for the Interactive Pocket Guide. The pocket guide is a handy little summary of panels and night events. When I finally found it, I started to star and circle all the panels and events that I did not want to miss. There is Saturday and Monday, flip it over and I discovered that the other side was Saturday and Monday.
I am the proud possessor of a gimpy Interactive Pocket Guide! I definitely know what I am doing today and Monday, don’t ask about Sunday or Tuesday.

SXSW – Travel Day

31204chicagoohare.jpg
7am Central Standard Time – Chicago O’Hare Airport

Thurs. March 11 from 7pm to Friday March 12th was/is the travel day to SXSW 2004. Here I am. I have arrived in Austin and am now plugged into the data port in my hotel room blogging to you.
During SXSW Interactive I will be attempting to blog daily about the adventures of the conferece and what is exciting, to me at least. Hopefully, I will get a photo of John Halcyon Styn without his shirt on for “Boys Gone Wild SXSW-Style.”
From Wed. to Sat/Sun. of next week during the Music portion of SXSW, Julie Wanda and I will blog about the Music panels and showcases over at the Barflies.net blog.
Last night and today was my travel day from LA to Chicago to Austin. Chicago O’Hare Airport is a fascinating place between 5am to 8am. The people watching at 6am is even more fascinating. Here are my conclusions on the matter after very little sleep:
Blonde people in Southern California come in all shapes, sizes, and ethnicities. The blonde hair, by and large, is the result of bleach.
There are lots of blonde people in Chicago. They all appear to be born that way, even if they use bleach to maintain it. They are all shapes, sizes, but appear to be of central and eastern European ethnicities.
There are lots of TALL blonde people in Austin. They all appear to be born that way, even if they use bleach to maintain it.
My conclusions: I am very short and brown haired/brown eyed.
Further conclusions: My college Logic professor, Dr. Cocchi, would find my logic above to be false, due to the lack of if then or presentation and thus statements.
Even further conclusions: Thus, it is bad to blog when one has had less than 3 hours sleep in the last 48 hours.

March Blooms

031004flowervine.jpg

Last year the unknown once-a-year flowering vine that has perched itself ontop of the overgrown side-of-the yard hedge bloomed in late January. This year it just started to send its flower buds out last week and went into full bloom today.
A Wee Bit Late, But Beautiful.

Notes from a Balmy Sunday

030704mtbaldyview.jpg
Photo shot from the door of the Doll Hut with a view of snow covered San Gabriel Mountains in the far distance at 4:30pm today.

1) Sign of Summer on its Way I: On Wed. Feb. 25th, while drive north back home along the I-15 after helping my Grandma pack up to move, I saw a few very early swallows swooping through the sky above the freeway. A week later, I saw a lone swallow flying about. Today I saw about 10 in Anaheim. While it is not quite time for the swallows to return, a week or two more to go, the advance scout guard has arrived from their wintering grounds in South America.
2) Sign of Summer on its Way II: Even though we, here in Orange County, are still 4 inches of rainfall under normal, the first good hot Santa Ana winds of the season showed up today. It was 83 -87 degrees Fahrenheit, nice winds, balmy to down right hot outdoors, and the garden wilted by 2pm.
3) Sign of the Apocalypse Starting Any Day Now: While various sects and cults have been predicting the end of the world for hundreds if not thousands of years now, P&GE will be delivering it to the faucets, showers, and tap water of Southern Californians ASAP. I predict that shares of Fiji bottled water will be shooting up ASAP. Buy now while you can, stock up, and turn off your faucet, as the Brita can’t filter Chromium 6….
PG&E’s Toxic Plume Creeps Toward L.A. Water Supply

Pacific Gas & Electric Co. is poised to begin pumping polluted groundwater from under the Mojave Desert to stop the toxic chemical hexavalent chromium from seeping into the Colorado River and tainting the water supply of 18 million Southern Californians.
The chemical compound, made infamous by the 2000 movie “Erin Brockovich,” is “on the brink of contaminating the Colorado River,” the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California warned in a strongly worded Feb. 11 letter to state regulators.
“We ask that you take additional emergency action sufficient to protect a resource of such critical importance to California,” the letter said.
The slow-moving toxic plume is emanating from land near PG&E’s Topock natural gas compressor station, south of Needles on California’s border with Arizona.
The utility used the chemical compound, also known as chromium 6, to control such things as corrosion and mold in water cooling towers at the isolated plant, which pushes natural gas along a pipeline from west Texas to the Los Angeles Basin. PG&E dumped the untreated wastewater in nearby percolation beds between 1951 and 1969.
The plume of at least 108 million gallons of chromium 6-tainted water is now threatening the river and causing alarm among experts at the Metropolitan Water District, which operates the Colorado River Aqueduct, a major source of Los Angeles’ drinking water.
“The plume has moved past the last sentry well. It’s thought to be 125 feet from the river,” said Lisa Anderson, an environmental engineer at MWD’s headquarters in Los Angeles.
Levels of chromium 6 in a monitoring well near the river have ranged from non-detectable to more than 100 parts per billion over the last few weeks, Anderson said. The mass of the plume, just a few hundred feet behind the leading edge, measures more than 12,000 ppb, and the maximum legal contaminant level for all types of chromium in drinking water is 50 ppb, she said.