the lack of computers has been a real setback for me. this is the first time in 15 years or so that i have been almost completely without a computer, and i don’t know how to deal with it… although i was able to complete two business card orders (one for $75 and one for $80 plus tax) on my remaining computer, an Os9 G3 Mac with a G4 processor upgrade and 256mb of RAM. theoretically i could run OsX on it, but it already runs slowly enough, and i don’t want to bog it down even further by having to run the Os9 emulator on top of it. the computer that i am getting to replace the linux box – which won’t even boot from a live CD, so the prospects of retrieving the data from the hard disk is remote, although i haven’t exhausted all of the options yet – is a newer-ish intel mac laptop from one of moe’s net-friends in denver. as much as i like the mac os, i’m probably going to install kubuntu on it instead of OsX, because of all of the free software that comes with kubuntu that i can’t run on OsX, and the fact that i can configure kubuntu to work with my 4-button mouse a lot more easily than i can OsX. it seems really weird, especially considering how often in the past i have ranted that if mac os were available for other platforms, i would run it, but there’s the matter of expediency that i never considered in those rants. oh well.
i have a gig tonight at smokin’ pete’s barbecue tonight, and moe and i are switching cars when i get home, so that tomorrow i can pack for burning man. hopefully we’re going to leave early saturday morning and possibly spend saturday night on the road, before arriving sunday. i say “hopefully” because i still don’t know details about leaving yet. stuart is doing all the communicating for them, and all i’ve heard is that heather has to work half a day on friday, they’re planning on showing up at my place “early” saturday morning, and we probably have to be back on monday the first. packing is going well, and i am dropping off my bike with myron (who is driving a trailer full of bikes down and back) this afternoon. it seems somewhat strange that i’m not taking a tent, but this is a strange event that takes place in an environment that is actively hostile to human beings, so it’s not that strange. i’m a little nervous, because i’ve never been before and i don’t know what to expect, but everybody else is really looking forward to it, so i guess it will be okay.
i talked to “my attorney” about the hearing for SSDI and he said that my case hasn’t even been assigned to a judge yet, and probably won’t be until december or january. i realise that this is not a criminal case, but i would think that the “speedy trial” clause would extend to all court cases whether or not they’re criminal… but if i thought that, apparently i would be wrong. i’m pushing two years of “unemployment” with no obvious way of supporting myself, and these people seem to think that it’s okay for them to screw around with their thumbs up their butts for a couple years while they figure out whether or not i’m actually disabled. all i would have to do is take off my hat and they would see the nine-inch scar on my scalp. so what if i’m driving, nobody will give me a job without firing me within 4 months. DVR has decided that i don’t fit into their mold and has finally written me off, but my SSDI case hasn’t even been assigned to a judge yet, despite the fact that it’s been a year and a half since i was denied my appeal.
yesterday was REALLY hot, and, like an idiot, i left my computer running all day in a room with no air conditioning. then, in the evening, i went in to check my email and the computer had frozen in the middle of a starscape screen saver, so i rebooted, and the message that came up was: Primary HD S.M.A.R.T. status BAD: back up and replace.
today is supposed to be even hotter (the weather report says it could get as high as 100°) and now i have two dead computers, neither of which i have the money to fix or replace, right before burning man!!!
i’m using moe’s computer to post this, and because of the fact that i’m going to burning man, i’m likely to be rather busy for the next couple of weeks, so if i’m absent from internet for a while, you’ll know where i am.
things are starting to come together concerning burning man. i have a way to get there (plan A, which was plan B has finally worked through most of the major difficulties) and people who will share driving and expenses. the gig at the queen anne farmers’ market went off without a hitch, the parade went off without a hitch, and the overall result has left me with $30 for gas, which i will add to the approximately $250 that i’ve already got. i’m going to the fremont sunday market this sunday, which will likely net me around $60 more, and the snake suspenderz gig at smokin’ pete’s next thursday should be icing on the cake.
on the other hand, i’ve made a more and more rare contact with sugandha prabhu, my long time friend and incense supplier (his name is steven, but i’ve known him as sugandha prabhu for almost as long as i’ve known him), and he says he can get me majmua durbar and aparajita, which, as far as i’ve been able to tell, are not available anywhere else. i’ve got an email in to him asking if it’s okay for me to send him money after the first of the month (and after burning man), but he’s getting more and more difficult to get hold of (i called him 3 or 4 times over the past 6 months or so, and he’s only just gotten back to me), and i’m not sure if he’s even checked his email. i’d really like to get the incense from him soon, but i’m not sure whether or not i can wait until after the first of the month, especially when he’s been so difficult to get hold of in the first place: i feel like now that i’ve actually got in touch with him that i should “strike while the iron’s hot” so to speak, otherwise he might not get back to me, or might not have the incense, or the prices may have changed… or he might have actually died… i know he’s been in and out of the hospital for the past few years with kidney problems which aren’t getting any better, and i’ve known him for 30 years or thereabouts and he’s never been that healthy to begin with… so it’s really a concern… especially since majmua durbar and aparajita are two of my personal favourite incenses, i’m running perilously low on both of them, and i know that if i don’t get them now the likelyhood that i’ll be able to get them in the future is that much less.
i had a rehearsal on monday with snake suspenderz, a rehearsal on tuesday with the the ballard sedentary sousa band, a parade in Brier today (from which there are pictures), and there’s going to be a gig in queen anne with snake suspenderz tomorrow. i have also been running around buying last minute things for burning man, like a patch kit and bicycle pump so that i can take my bicycle, and closed-toe shoes (it has been so long since i’ve worn anything other than birkenstocks, i don’t even know what size “normal” shoe i wear) and a first aid kit. i plan on getting the oil changed and the brakes looked at on both cars this weekend. plan B has, more or less predictably, turned into “very likely plan A”, which means that i will be driving to burning man, most likely with stuart and heather.
i went to a burning man organisational barbecue last night. from what i now understand, it’s going to cost me a fair amout of money above and beyond the ticket price – which is $0, because i have sold my soul to bettie june, coordinator for the man watch. it’s apparently going to cost $75 to camp with the cirque folks. i don’t know if it doesn’t cost anything if i camp by myself, but $75 for a week of food and showers is a pretty good deal, so i’m not complaining. the cirque de flambé camp is at esplanade and approximately 3:00, and from what i understand, it’s going to be pretty noisy. i’m probably going to take 10 gallons of water. i don’t know how i’m getting there yet, and the organisational barbecue that we had last night doesn’t help – apparently a number of other people need rides as well, including johnny jetpack and our ringmaster, moz wright. plan B is supposed to be that i drive down, presumably with at least one other person, in monique’s minivan. i’m thinking that plan B is sounding more and more like a workable plan A, especially since i can sleep in the minivan, which would mean that i don’t have to take, or worry about things like a tent – in which i would have much less protection from a dust storm, which i understand are quite frequent on the playa. the problem at this point is that it’s supposed to be plan B, and i’m supposed to be finding another way to get there, which means that i have to take a tent and worry about whether or not it will be enough shelter in the event of a dust storm… the minivan has a roof rack, so if i take that, there’s gonna be plenty of room for miscelaneous stuff. i’m also wondering whether i it would be a good idea to take my bicycle.
oh yeah, i also thought Shit Box would be an appropriate product to have on hand… and it also makes me wonder how long until UPS starts having a fit about “The Brown Corporation”