Some days I feel like I've done all the "work" I can stand in the first 30 minutes of commuting (write tech/algorithm code is not really "work" , though dealing with MSDev or cdep project settings is "work", as is fighting the damn broken IEEE web site to give me the papers I paid for). Yes, yes, I know I'm a big whiner, there are poor people who take ten buses to commute for three hours to their shitty job at McDonalds where some pimply teenage assistant manager treats them like garbage all day long, the customers are rude to them, and they breathe oil fumes under flourescent lights.
Anyway, I pull out of the ramp and step on the gas to rapidly get up to speed and merge smoothly, as I always do. After a few seconds I notice there's a cop right behind me. He follows me closely over the bridge and then puts his lights on to pull me over. Hmm.. I'm not really exactly sure what he's going to say. He comes up to the car and says "I saw you accelerate out of that ramp and rapidly change lanes". My jaw just drops. Uh, yeah, that's what you're fucking supposed to do dumbass. I say "okay". Wow. I'm in shock, I feel like when the guy asked me not to park in front of his house on the completely empty street, my mind is blown. He winds up writing me a ticket for going 65 (I have no idea how fast I was going, there was lots of traffic, I was just going the same speed as the guy in front of me). After he writes the ticket he tells me to be safe pulling back into traffic, so I say "so you want me to get on slowly and jam everyone up?" ; he gives me a dirty look and says "just be safe". (I try hard not to sass cops anymore; I got my car towed once because I told off a cop that pulled me over for expired registration; it's safer to sass them after they've written the ticket because then they'd have to do a whole new set of paperwork to write a new one). (I was particularly aggravated because I'd just been watching all the fuckers cheat the carpool lane).
Ugh. I certainly don't deny that I deserve speeding tickets, I speed my balls off. The funny thing is I never seem to get them when I'm actually speeding. I got one for going 60 mph on the freeway in Houston. I got a ticket in Seattle ten years ago for "unnecessary tire noise" when I went around a corner - this in a fucking Prelude (I told the cop at the time, dude I couldn't spin my tires if I wanted to). The only time I actually got a ticket when I was speeding was out in the country in Texas near Sugarland in a bunch of empty roads for a subdivision that hadn't been built yet. (it was off the 99; I guess it was probably "Long Meadow Farms" or "Waterside Estates" or something, though none of that existed at the time). Houston suburb construction is incredibly corrupt; the big builders all have connections in government, and the roads and power and sewer lines are laid in advance and paid for by the city, effectively a huge subsididy for these suburb builders who keep pushing ever farther out into undeveloped land. I'd found a patch of roads that had been laid out into fields that had only months ago been that dense nasty Texas woods, and was speeding my balls off around the empty roads; I got a ticket for doing 85 in a 45 there which normally would be a license-suspending kind of thing but I guess the cop had a little bit of mercy based on the fact that there was not another human in sight for miles around.
In my youth this ticket would have made me outraged, angry at society, and talking of all kinds of drastic reactions. Now it just makes me sad. I'm tired.
I watched the movie "Stroszek" a little while ago. It's pretty terrible, but it had some great moments. It's a Werner Herzog movie, so it's a total mess. Herzog movies are sort of like the film equivalent of experimental free jazz. He just sort of has a vague idea and tosses some people in front of a camera and sees what happens. Yes, they are as terrible as that sounds, but there are moments of brilliance, and even when they are failures at least they're interesting and full of humanity. The best scenes in Stroszek IMO are when the banker comes to foreclose on the house and Bruno rants the whole time about how this bastard is crushing his life while doing it with a smile. All Herzog movies are about the struggle of individuals to claw a way through this world with a bit of self-determination, dignity, and individuality.
It looks like my cable is fixed; I'm still not sure exactly what the problem was. The technician who came out replaced a bunch of lines, but I had had zero problems for a year and then suddenly had problems all the time so I don't really believe that bad lines were the problem. I assume that something changed upstream which made the signal to my building worse, which then pushed me over a threshold where my bad lines started causing problems. I've heard this can happen when the cable company adds a bunch of subscribes and splits an upstream wire, it lowers signal quality for everyone.
Anyway, I wanted to write some notes cuz the technician said some things I didn't know. One was to not use a signal booster. Since my SNR was shitty before I was running a Motorola high-bandwidth signal booster, which fixed my problem with squiggly lines and noise on my TV. Apparently the cable modem doesn't like it, because the modem only works in a certain power band, and I was actually giving it too much power. The other thing was that one of my interior lines was an old wire. Apparently they've changed the wires, the newer wires can carry a wider signal spectrum. I guess that's part of how they keep upping the bandwidth they can send on the wires - higher frequencies.