Birthdays

Monday wasn’t my best birthday. I had to train for a new job, I couldn’t make it to the Capitol for Advocacy Day against gun violence, I missed lunch, there was blizzarding, and I was grossly late visiting a friend. Although a lot of things went wrong, it wasn’t my worst birthday either, so I’m okay with that.

I don’t remember all my birthdays, or even most of them, but a couple stand out vividly.

The worst birthday I remember is the one right after I was hit by a car in American Fork. 2011? I was in a wheelchair and I got off the bus and was trying to wheel myself down this devastated sidewalk to my house in the ice and snow, and I suffered a hemorrhage that I thought might kill me. I wept in the restroom at Apollo Burger.

Thank God THAT day is not TOday.

The best birthday I remember, a bunch of friends and I had planned on karaoke at our favorite place, but when we got there, it had been canceled for the Super Bowl. So we randomly chose teams and behaved like over the top fans, although most of us neither knew nor cared about football. We probably cheered at a lot of the wrong things, especially as the drinking went on, but all I remember is that I had so much fun.

The Year I Was 50

Last year, after my birthday, I started keeping a list of some of the cool things I did while being a 50-year-old. It’s now my birthday again, so here’s that list, in no particular order:

  • I achieved debt freedom a second time.
  • I joined a gym, and I liked it.
  • I found a zumba class that I actually liked.
  • I tried boxing and liked it.
  • Did not like the weights class.
  • I bought a punching bag.
  • I attended two professional soccer games. And then I bought season tickets for the next season.
  • I ate some rambutans for the first time.
  • I cooked and ate artichokes for the first time. Not sure how much I liked them.
  • I tried marmite and didn’t like it.
  • I tried vegan faux-beef jerky. It was pretty good.
  • I tried a pomelo. It was okay.
  • I had tapas and loved it.
  • I introduced my Utahn colleagues to chow-chow. They loved it.
  • I went to Thailand. Ate so many new and wonderful foods.
  • I ate mangosteen, longan, salak. Did not like the salak.
  • I attended a Thai wedding and saw my little baby married.
  • I was made welcome by a whole new family.
  • I hung out with elephants and fed a few.
  • I visited a floating market.
  • I rode commuter boats. By accident!
  • I rode a motor scooter in a foreign country.
  • I traveled through China. It was a little scary.
  • I celebrated Dia de Muertos in Mexico City, and again ate a ton of great food.
  • I took an international trip just for a weekend.
  • I failed an exam and still felt good.
  • I became VMware Certified Professional.
  • I became a Dell Certified Associate.
  • I moved out of Support and into Application Managed Services.
  • I bought firearms.
  • I registered as a Democrat. Was not happy about it, but needs must.
  • I ran a voter registration drive.
  • I got seriously involved with Moms Demand Action.
  • I learned how to lobby at the State Capitol. And I met some Senators and Representatives.
  • I took painting classes.
  • I found a utility shell for my truck and outfitted it for camping as well as tools.
  • I went to Drag Queen Bingo and loved it.
  • I bought special computer glasses and they’re great!
  • I got a fortune from Zoltar. He said I’m gonna find love – either romance or a great friendship.
  • I ended a 10-year commitment to cover my head.
  • I got my first spiral perm.
  • I finally started getting tattoos again. I got a lot! And I got a lot of my old ones fixed.
  • I got henna for the first time.
  • I commissioned art!
  • I introduced my cat to video games.

The coming year:

  • A summer scooter trip from Durango, Colorado.
  • A Labor Day Weekend scooter trip in Yellowstone.
  • At least one trip to shop for cheap desert land.
  • A trip to NM to hang out with an old friend and a new friend.

Docking

I was completely satisfied.

Almost.

It was still annoying, the way the content on my monitors would switch when moving from work to home and vice versa. But beyond that, I was happy. I had E/Port docks in both places, and E/Port was compatible with both work and personal laptops. And I had purchased the same monitors for at home that I had at work. All good!

And then the case of my work laptop started having a gap in the front, and I had a bad feeling. I unscrewed the case and sure enough, the battery was bulging.

Friends, this is bad news. This is the kind of problem that can set things on fire.

So I  hauled it in to work on my day off to get the battery replaced. Only they don’t get batteries for that model anymore, so that means issuing a whole other laptop.

No worries. I’m always ready for that. And when you work in The Cloud, whatever is on your physical machine is pretty moot, right?

Except they handed me a new dock, too. Looked like a brick. I would find out that this is a Thunderbolt dock, and the new work laptop had zero compatibility with the E/Port.

Further, my personal, privately owned computer would have no compatibility with the second Thunderbolt dock they gave me for working from home.

As of this minute, at home, I have two completely separate docks plugged in. Each has its own pair of cables to the two monitors. Each is plugged into my finite power capacity. And I am manually moving the USB dongles for mouse and keyboard from one to the other.

And I have an order in for tomorrow for a universal docking station because I am not cool with this. How relieved to discover that universal docking stations even exist. I made sure this one has the connections I need for the monitors I have, because a lot don’t.

Fingers crossed.