spring cleaning

I mentioned in a blog post about a month ago that I had found a receipt for a copy of OS/2 that I had bought in 1994. Well, I was doing some spring cleaning today, and I found that copy of OS/2, along with several OS/2 books and other old computer books. I threw them all out, sad to say. It’s a small apartment I live in, and there’s no room to keep outdated software, or books about outdated software, lying around. Goodbye OS/2, dBase IV, Clipper 5.2, Lotus 123 for DOS, and Novell 3.11. I’ll miss you. Or not, in some cases.

iBook problems and Jethro Tull

I noticed that Apple added a bunch of Jethro Tull stuff to the iTunes store this week. Tull was my very favorite band back in my teen years. They’re still a sentimental favorite, though I don’t listen to them much anymore. Browsing through the stuff in iTunes made me think a bit about which Tull albums I had on CD, vs. the ones I only ever had on cassette or vinyl. While I have about a dozen Tull CDs, I’m missing a few key albums that I never got around to re-purchasing. I also realized that I’d never ripped any Tull into my iTunes library. I decided to correct that by ripping the 20 Years of Jethro Tull box set.

I didn’t get very far, since my iBook wouldn’t pull the first CD into the drive. Nor would it pull any other CD into the drive. After some research, I eventually figured out that you can fix this problem by inserting a CD into the drive right as the iBook starts. OK, that’s kind of weird. The drive sounds kind of funny now, but it’s loading, reading, and ejecting CDs fine.

Getting back to Tull, I found a few casettes that I didn’t have on CD, so I figured I’d look into buying them from iTunes, or maybe just getting the CDs from Amazon. As usual, the iTunes version is more expensive than buying the physical CD from Amazon in most cases — usually $10 from iTunes and $8 from Amazon. The one notable exception is “A”, which comes with a bonus DVD if you get it from Amazon, so it costs a bit more than just buying the album from iTunes.


The new building a couple of doors down from mine is apparently going to be a Marriott ExecuStay. It looks like they’re almost finished with it. It seems kind of weird to have an upscale extended-stay hotel just down the street from me. Are there really a lot of people out there who’d want to rent a room in Somerville like this? I have no idea how much they’re charging, but what I’ve seen of these places is that they’re usually $99 a night, or something like that, with a 30-day minimum. I guess there are probably a fair number of people who stay in Somerset County for business reasons for a month or two, maybe working for one of the pharmaceutical companies around here, and I suppose downtown Somerville would be a nice place to stay, versus staying somewhere on Route 22 or 206.

Hey, maybe I can talk one of the maids over there into coming over and cleaning my apartment!

back from WonderCon

Well, I’m back in NJ. It was snowing a bit as we came into Newark, so I really feel like I’m back home now, after the great weather in SF. Sunday at WonderCon was pretty uneventful. I went to the “Art of the Cover” panel that Mark Evanier has been doing for the past few years. It was once again very enjoyable. I bought a few more comics, but not a lot. A few discount manga volumes, a couple of half-price trade paperbacks, and a set of “21 Down” 1-12.

Off to bed in a few minutes, then back to work tomorrow.

WonderCon, day two

I left the con early today, largely because I was weighed down with so much stuff I could barely move, and also because I’d hit a lull in the programming where there really wasn’t anything I wanted to sit through at that point. I may head back in a bit to catch a panel with Brian K. Vaughn, Pia Guerra, and Tony Harris. I’m not sure I’d be able to claw my way back to the Moscone Center, though, since the streets are starting to fill up for the Chinese New Year parade already.

I picked up a bunch of stuff today, mostly at pretty good prices. I got The Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide to Eccentric and Discredited Diseases, which is a book I’d been meaning to pick up since it came out, a couple of years back. Really oddball stuff in there, including contributions from Neil Gaiman, Michael Moorcock, and Alan Moore.

I also got several Powers collections, volumes 5 to 8, at various discount levels. I’d read the first four volumes some time ago, but hadn’t gotten around to picking up any more. Looking at the dates on these, I guess I’m still not up to date, but I’m a bit closer. It’s great that Bendis continues to work on this. It’s different from his other Marvel work, and always a good read.

I haven’t been following Civil War at all, but I’ve been curious, and now that it’s done, I figured I’d try and pick up a set of 1-7. I found someone selling a set at right around cover price, along with a set of Civil War: Front Line also at right around cover, so I went ahead and got both. I’m not generally seeing Civil War back issues selling at below cover, so I guess people are still interested in this storyline, and some (like me) are just jumping on the bandwagon now that it’s over.

What would a con experience be without picking some stuff out of the quarter bin? Incomplete, I say. Brian K. Vaughn, during his spotlight panel, mentioned that he’d done a Ka-Zar annual early in his career, and I managed to find that in a quarter box. I also found some of the Jeph Loeb / Tim Sale Challengers of the Unknown mini-series, which Loeb talked about during *his* spotlight panel. I would have liked to get the Ka-Zar annual and one of the Challengers issues signed, just for laughs, but I may have missed out on my chance for BKV and Loeb autographs at this point.


I’m here in San Francisco at WonderCon right now. In a (perhaps) interesting example of Old Ways meet New Ways, I picked up Nextwave 1-7 from a dealer yesterday, for $15, then went on eBay last night and bid on a set of Nextwave 7-12. I won the auction at $7.50, so I now have a complete set of Nextwave 1-12 (with an extra #7) for a pretty reasonable price. Now, I need to go looking for Fell, another Warren Ellis series that flew under my radar, so to speak, when it first came out.