The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Friday, April 22, 2016

… aaaaaaand we're back!

It's night. It's more a monsoon than a heavy rain. The thunder is deafening. There are lightening bolts slamming into the earth every few seconds. I'm driving in a construction zone. And every other driver out there is an idiot with their hazzard lights blinking.

I'm having way too much fun for the driving conditions. What a blast!

We're home now. The drive was pretty uneventful until Jacksonville. As I was filling up the car, some guy in an unmarked white van tried to sell us frozen steaks (no, really!). But despite the lack of good steaks recently we decline to buy any.

We then hit very heavy traffic through downtown Jacksonville and by the time that cleared up, we were in the middle of a monsoon for the next eighty miles. After that, it was clear skies all the way to Chez Boca.

Now we collapse.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

A quiet day on vacation

This is our last day in Brevard and we took it easy. We had lunch with an old friend of mine who lives in town. For dinner, we went to Binion's Roadhouse, a place we liked last time we ate there.

I'm not sure what's going on in North Carolina, but it seems we cannot get a good steak in this state. Ribeye. Medium rare. It shouldn't be that difficult. Tonight, shoe leather—twice! At least the second one had a bit of medium on it.


Tonight we pack and then tomorrow—driving! Lots and lots of driving.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

A sooperseekrit blast from the past

While at Black Dog Salvage I came across this:

[... and the Harmonic Llamas, chanting “Emmit with the hemmit and the shouldama pads.”  Only two other people are expected to get this. The rest of you will just have to keep scratching your heads in puzzlement.]

It obviously stands for “Black Dog Salvage” but it caught my attention because it has another meaning to me (yes, this is an inside joke from a long time ago).

Black Dog Salvage

Bunny is a fan of the television show Salvage Dawgs and since we were in “the neighborhood“ (for medium values of “neighborhood”) of Roanoke, VA we figured we would drive on out and check out Black Dog Salvage.

[I think they'll need a bigger rocket if they want to beat Andy Griffith to the moon.]

It's not a bad place if you are into architectural salvage stores. And it's huge. A ton of stuff for sale, from tiles to columns (Corinthian, Ionic and Doric), doors, and even stairways. It's all for sale.

The main cast members were not there as they were out salvaging some more stuff, but Bunny did recognize one person who has appeared on the show.

We had fun.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Extreme drive-thru, Winston-Salem edition

Bunny and I stopped in Winston-Salem for dinner on the way back to Brevard. Inside the restaurant—

[It's a pan-dimensional drive-thru, which is fine if you're Buckaroo Bonzai. But I'm not, so that's why we didn't notice it at first.]

We didn't realize it was also a drive-thru restaurant. And upon leaving, we realized we should have driven through and not stopped at all (the staff was wonderful, unfortunately, the food wasn't so wonderful).

Driving to China

Bunny had this large china dinner set she wanted to sell, and given that we would be in the neighborhood (for medium values of “neighborhood”) we drove to Replacements, Ltd. in the small town of McLeansville, some three and a half hours from Brevard. It's not a small operation:

[No need to dig to China when there's a metric butt load of china right here.]

And not just limited to plates. They have crystal; they have figurines; they have … lots of stuff.

And for those of you who are not in the “neighborhood,” they ship as well.

Monday, April 18, 2016

The Jungle Book

Bunny and I went to see “The Jungle Book,” the Disney remake of their 1967 animated movie, “The Jungle Book.” Don't be fooled if you think this is all live action—it's not. It's nearly all animated, but the computer animation is quite good throughout the movie.

It follows more the 1967 version than the book, but as a remake, this is darker and quite a bit more violent than the original Disney version—it defintely earns its PG rating (and I'm surprised it didn't get a PG-13—Shere Khan is a villian in this vesion). And just like the original, you get the musical numbers “The Bare Necessities” (which didn't seem that out of place) and “I Wan'na Be Like You” (which … um … didn't quite fit).

All the voice actors were good but … well … when King Louie (not in the book and created by Disney) first appeared in the film, it seemed as if the voice actor was doing an odd impersonation of Marlon Brando as Colonel Kurtz when it finally dawned on me—it was Christopher Walken, who I think was doing a Christopher Walkenian impression of Marlon Brando doing Colonel Kurtz and finally doing a Christopher Walkenian impression of Christopher Walken.

But aside from that (even as an orangutan, Walken is Walken) it was worth seeing. We both enjoyed the movie.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

The Alton Brown Eat Your Science Tour

Bunny and I were in Charlotte for Alton Brown's Eat Your Science Tour. He wasn't getting any closer to Florida for this tour and Charlotte isn't that far from Brevard (Orlando is farther from Chez Boca than Charlotte is from Brevard).

If anything, this show was better than his previous tour even if in this show he didn't make a pizza in 60 seconds or ice cream in ten seconds. Just two things to keep in mind when seeing this show:

  1. Be on time or you will be viciously mocked by Alton Brown himself;
  2. Even if you don't like bacon, you will like bacon or you will be viciously mocked by Alton Brown, even if you are a fourteen year old girl.

Although, if you are late, just give Alton some whiskey and he'll forgive you.

Again, if you are a fan of Good Eats or of Alton Brown himself, it's worth seeing the show.

Exreme chess sets, Ritz-Carlton edition

Bunny and I ducked into the Ritz-Carlton in downtown Charlotte for a few minutes. Inside, I saw this very abstract, and very large, chess set:

[The Ritz-Carlton spared no expense in sponsoring this abstract chess board.]

I found it nice, but it's one of those things where if you have to ask how much it is, you certainly can't afford it.

Extreme busking, Charlotte version

Bunny and I are in Charlotte when we come across this guy busking downtown:

[I think he wanted to try out for the role of The Tin Man for the theater production of The Wizard Of Oz.]

Although he was dancing rather than playing an instrument, so I'm not sure if this is actually busking or not.

It's extreme, whatever it is.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Perhaps not so exteme bar stools, Brevard edition

While the sample size of two is small, the fact that of the two bars I've seen in Brevard each has saddles as bar stools.

[Perhaps in Brevard, it is normal to have saddles as bar stools.]

Is this a thing? Did I not get the memo?

Obligatory Picture

[Don't hate me for my sock monkey headphones.]

Obligatory Links

Obligatory Miscellaneous

You have my permission to link freely to any entry here. Go ahead, I won't bite. I promise.

The dates are the permanent links to that day's entries (or entry, if there is only one entry). The titles are the permanent links to that entry only. The format for the links are simple: Start with the base link for this site:, then add the date you are interested in, say 2000/08/01, so that would make the final URL:

You can also specify the entire month by leaving off the day portion. You can even select an arbitrary portion of time.

You may also note subtle shading of the links and that's intentional: the “closer” the link is (relative to the page) the “brighter” it appears. It's an experiment in using color shading to denote the distance a link is from here. If you don't notice it, don't worry; it's not all that important.

It is assumed that every brand name, slogan, corporate name, symbol, design element, et cetera mentioned in these pages is a protected and/or trademarked entity, the sole property of its owner(s), and acknowledgement of this status is implied.

Copyright © 1999-2016 by Sean Conner. All Rights Reserved.