Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Parents meet parents!

I still haven't written much about the recent Parental Summit, when Scott's parents and my parents all got together out here in Davis to meet each other and take their favorite children out to eat. Besides all the good food and excellent company, here are the highlights:

  • Walking through the arboretum, examining cork and olive and eucalyptus trees, along with the big white head sculptures sprinkled liberally through campus.

  • All four parents arriving at our house with Chinese takeout and getting to spend time with them during an otherwise very busy day.

  • Showing the parents Virtual CSI: NY.

  • Scott's explanation of why his building is the Death Star.

  • Highlights from Saturday in San Francisco

  • Mid-morning pastries from the oldest Chinese bakery in San Francisco, and an evening stop at a Chinese grocery for tiny dried fish, little dried mussels, large dried mushrooms and unusual tea.

  • Biking across Golden Gate Bridge. I saw an otter below, and the pelicans were soaring so close above our heads that we could see their sagging gular sacs.

  • Seeing the bridge itself at such an intimate level and pace.

  • Reading "DEATH MONSTERS AHEAD" on the bike path, just before a street cut across.

  • Browsing City Lights Bookstore, convincing my mom to buy On Writing Well, and picking up E. B. White's The Elements of Style for myself.

  • Deciding not to rush home to Davis that night, and relaxing over a nice dinner with my parents instead.

  • Using my new book to determine correct punctuation in conjunction with parentheses while waiting for our food to arrive.

  • Not checking e-mail, and feeling like I had a real vacation day, far away from Davis.
  • Monday, October 29, 2007

    I got back from New York City last night. Here are some of the highlights of the trip:

  • Sitting on a pillow on the floor in the basement of a fancy Manhattan bar surrounded by Sheep, sipping a glass of wine, and watching Gary Sinese yell, "Log off! Log off, NOW!" on primetime TV.

  • Doing dishes with Becky on Friday night and knowing that the work week was over.

  • Venturing out into a rainy Upper East Side, in search of good New York pizza with Kate.

  • Finding good New York pizza and eating it with Kate.

  • Sleeping in until 11 o'clock on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

  • Wandering through Chelsea galleries, talking about art, thinking about color, planning to create it myself.

  • Listening Kate and her friend Katherine's shrieks when Ellsbury was at bat and when Papelbaum came out to pitch and when the Red Sox won Game 3.

  • Halloween costumes all weekend long - on little kids (Spiderman), on little dogs (a spider), on grown men (the tooth fairy) and on roller skaters in Central Park (a pirate/cheerleader).

  • The lavender and gold sunset on the way to the airport and the pumpkin moonrise while we taxied before takeoff.
  • Sunday, October 28, 2007

    Thursday, October 25, 2007

    We did it. We launched!

    It looks like tonight will be a quiet night - the first one we've had in a while. The CSI: NY Virtual Experience launched last night, and things have been going really well. A bunch of Sheep celebrated at a bar in Manhattan last night, where we watched the airing on a big-screen TV... and of course had a bunch of laptops running. Some people were making sure the registration portal was running, some were keeping the servers going, some were making sure the sims were staffed with greeters. It was neat to watch the registration numbers spike each time a commercial for the project came on. It was great to watch the episode itself, after so many months of preparation. But when it was over... it was over. So soon. It felt very abrupt. Good thing it's a cliffhanger and we get to watch our work on primetime again in a few months. (That's assuming the writers don't go on strike.)

    Kate came to the party too, and it was great to share the experience with her. I have such a hard time explaining my work to people, so I really appreciate opportunities to actually show what I do.

    I spent the night at Kate's and heard all about her recent skydiving trip and decided that I really want to go. Scott's been already, and is busy as a bee these days, so I'm not sure what my chances are of convincing him to join me. But maybe I could get Fred...

    And, finally, an explanation of why my color is "light cyan."

    you are lightcyan

    Your dominant hues are green and blue. You're smart and you know it, and want to use your power to help people and relate to others. Even though you tend to battle with yourself, you solve other people's conflicts well.

    Your saturation level is very low - you have better things to do than jump headfirst into every little project. You make sure your actions are going to really accomplish something before you start because you hate wasting energy making everyone else think you're working.

    Your outlook on life is very bright. You are sunny and optimistic about life and others find it very encouraging, but remember to tone it down if you sense irritation.
    the html color quiz

    Tuesday, October 23, 2007

    More Virtual CSI: NY promotion!

    It launches tomorrow, Wednesday the 24th. I'm flying to NYC tonight to attend the launch party.

    Saturday, October 20, 2007

    Friday, October 19, 2007

    The parental summit

    As my previous posts indicate, I've been up to my eyelids in work the past few weeks. We launch on Wednesday the 24th, so make sure you watch CSI: NY that night! You'll get a glimpse of what we've been working on lately.

    The really exciting news is that Scott's parents and my parents came to visit us this past week! This was the first time they had met each other, and I'm happy to report that things went swimmingly. They got rained on quite a bit but still had a good time hiking, touring a vineyard, learning about the gold rush, and visiting their eldests. I expect to see a full write-up here soon!

    Scott's parents left on Wednesday, and mine moved west to San Francisco. Scott and I are meeting them there tomorrow for a day of sightseeing. If it's nice out, we'll rent bikes, ride across the Golden Gate Bridge, check stuff out and then take the ferry back. Maybe the Asian Art Museum in the afternoon, and then one last nice dinner.

    It's too bad they couldn't have visited at a time when I had a little less work to do. I would have liked to spend more time with them. As it happened, though, I think I savored my time with them more than I would have otherwise. It felt so good to step out from behind my computer screen and to have so many wonderful people to spend that precious non-work time with!

    Thursday, October 18, 2007

    Thursday, October 11, 2007

    CSI: NY Second Life Virtual Experience

    "Check out a first look at the upcoming CSI: NY Second Life virtual experience. Don't miss the episode everyone is talking about on Wednesday, October 24 at 10pm et/pt only on CBS."

    Wednesday, October 10, 2007

    Lovin' my oven

    Another benefit of working from home is that I'm in a great position to roast things.

    Scott had picked up a pumpkin on his last grocery run. A little random, perhaps, but Mark Bittman came to the rescue. I sliced it, brushed it with a terrific mix of oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, cinnamon and sugar, and baked it for an hour. We ate it over spinach, with a sprinkling of gorgonzola and a balsamic vinaigrette. It tasted fantastic, and the house smelled like cinnamon for the rest of the night.

    Last night, the eggplants had their turn in the oven. The skin got wrinkly, the flesh went in the food processor, and out came baba ghannouj. Also quite tasty.

    We had a quick dinner tonight (chicken in coconut curry that Scott whipped up) and then got to spend time with Scott's parents, who just arrived. They'll be in California for the week, and we're looking forward to seeing more of them this weekend (when my parents will also be here).

    Busy day... ready for bed.

    Wednesday, October 03, 2007

    I <3 afternoon naps.

    After lunch today I lay down to take a 10-minute power nap, but I slept for an hour. Oh, the joys of working from home. I got up, washed away the grogginess with a frothy soy cappuccino (have I mentioned how much I enjoy my new milk frother?) and have had a surprisingly productive day ever since. I've always been an early riser and have enjoyed getting things done early in the day, but these days no matter how early I get started, everyone on the east coast has already had a 3-hour jump start on me. The day invariably starts out hectic with all kinds of e-mails and IMs and phone calls to respond to. But sitting down to do work after dinner means that I can focus on producing things rather than just responding to things. Don't get me wrong, I'd much rather be out playing frisbee or crashing grad school parties, but given the amount of work on my plate these days it's definitely preferable to getting up at 3 am.