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Good News!!

It's no Geico, but I just saved about $1000 on my health insurance. Instead of going through my last company's COBRA I'm getting Instacare for $50 a month. Its like the Ramen of health insurance. I can only use it for 90 days, but I think I should switch to something with slightly better coverage.

Getting new health insurance is the most annoying part about changing jobs.
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a good bachelor meal

The Target deli near me sells a whole roast chicken for $5. I think it's a good deal. I usually bring it home and eat half with something complimentary like a bowl of cookie crisp. Breckenridge Vanilla Porter pairs well with this.
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Atlas Shrugged vs Water for Elephants

I've been interested in checking out Ayn Rand for many years and I finally decided to read Atlas Shrugged. It took a while to read and felt like a chore about halfway through. A Reader's Digest condensed version would have been awesome. She had some good points about preferring self interest over altruism, but I think she goes a little overboard. In Atlas Shrugged most of the "heroes" act like a bunch of stubborn assholes. They never convincingly try to get other characters to understand their viewpoint and then they complain about how the rest of society is stealing their hard-earned productivity.

Water for Elephants was a lot more enjoyable to read and kept me engaged the whole time. It was mainly flashbacks to a circus setting told by a guy in a nursing home. So it seemed kind of like a cross between Carnivale and Bubba Ho-Tep (unfortunately there were no supernatural elements...). I think this book is marketed to book clubs because my copy had a bunch of discussion group questions at the end. I wonder if book clubs really use those. I think I will try to find more of these club type books.
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My cool trip

I went to California for my friend Amber's wedding. I spent two days in Palo Alto and two days in San Francisco. I got to see all of my friends that were also out there, but it would have been cool to hang out a little more. I also saw some touristy things, but it would have been cool to see some more of those too.

The Monteray Bay Aquarium was pretty awesome. I liked the kelp bed exhibit with all kinds of fish floating around. Also, giant tuna are pretty amazing. The drive there took up the whole day.

On Monday I was going to check out a museum, but it was closed on Mondays. I drove up to San Francisco and found that most of their museums are also closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

I did get into the museum of cartoon art. It is an interesting idea, but I think they need an acquisition budget to round out the collection. Right now it has mainly donated works. One exhibit called Sex and Sensibility seemed more like an advertisement for a book of cartoons by the same name.

The Museum of Modern Art was also cool. I liked seeing some things by the same artists that have works at the Walker.

On Tuesday night I went to a club called Glass Kat for a bachata lesson. The instructor was from the Philippines and there was a woman from the Dominican Republic heckling him on how the dance was supposed to be done. That stuff always amuses me.
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New job

I started a new job a few weeks ago. It is in the USA and not China. I'm kind of bummed out about not going to China, but it was getting more complicated logistics wise. I realized I would be better off financially working here and taking long vacations than going there and working hard with tiny vacations.

My new job is awesome. I am using Ruby on Rails to build a spiffy application. The business users are very happy that the application is getting built quickly. During my first week I cleaned up a bunch of failing tests (90% failing - I got it to 0%). Then I sped up the tests so everything runs in 30 seconds instead of 10 minutes. Next, I'm running a code coverage tool to make sure the tests cover all of our code. Right now we have about 60% coverage.
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(no subject)

note on my windshield this morning:


My mom has cancer. For whatever reason, it bothers her very much when you park your car in front of our house. Quite frankly, we need her to focus on more than your car right now.

We know it's a public street and the rest of the arguments you may have... but there is, in Mom's defense, sufficient room to park on your side of the street.

Thanks for your consideration
Colleen