Monthly Archives: May 2006

New fence

Last month I tore down the rotting privacy fence in our backyard and built a new low spaced-picket fence. In addition to just being ugly to look at and nearly collapsed in a few places, the old fence was tall and prevented us from enjoying the space behind our house: essentially a private park owned by a local church but also accessible to the neighborhood.

new fence It took me a week of part-time work and numerous Home Depot trips to build the new fence, which is about 60 feet across. I was able to salvage the strongest of the existing posts, cutting them off to match the new fence height. The ones that were rotten I removed and replaced by laying several new posts in concrete. I measured and cut each post so that the top of the fence line was level even though the ground slopped up slightly on one side of the yard.

I’m very happy with the way it turned out. It opened the yard up even more than I was hoping for, and the better gate makes it easy to take a walk in the back. Another side effect I had not expected was encountering new people who routinely take their dogs for walks. Having a shorter fence is similar to parking your car in the driveway instead of your garage: you’ll see your neighbors more if you do.

Anyway, a very rewarding experience. After so much crafting code and pushing pixels, it’s nice to build something real and see the results. The “image on Flickr”: is one I took a few evenings ago and shows about half the full fence length.

Hello Saturday

I had a busy week coding. Long days and longer nights. Deadlines are fast approaching. The last few weeks of a project are always the most stressful, but also the most rewarding as all the pieces start to fall into place. The user interface tightens up and the bugs are found and worked out.

I shut my computer off last night and didn’t look at it again. Spent a great morning out shopping and at lunch. It’s a lazy Saturday afternoon — a holiday weekend, even — but I have a bit more code to knock out. The new Dixie Chicks CD is playing, iChat is safely in the “off” position, and for another hour or so, everything in the world is just fine.

Red crayon

I was wired when I got back at midnight last Thursday from the late Mission Impossible 3 show with “Damon”: A storm had passed over while we were in the theater. Tree branches were down in the neighborhood, and rain continued.

I sat at the dining room table with a sheet of typing paper and a fat red kids crayon and did some characters. It’s hard to draw small with something so big. These were at least twice the diameter of your standard crayon. I shrunk the result slightly and included a few below because I liked some of the line, despite the otherwise clunkiness.

Fun with a fat red crayon