Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage

Heather and I just got back from a trip to Studio Movie Grill to go see the Rush documentary, Beyond The Lightest Stage. It covers the history of the musicians and the band from their origins in high school all the way up to Snakes and Arrows (and a little past that). There were lots of great insights into their lives and career, as well as interviews with many other musicians. If you’re a Rush fan or at all interested in them, see if there’s still a showtime available. If not, you can pre-order the DVD at Amazon.

Into The Looking Glass

More John Ringo fun. It’s the start of a new series from a pretty darned good author. It’s hard military sci-fi, but with some great geek in-jokes every so often. The story centers around the chaos caused by the accidental opening of wormholes/gates to other worlds. And not everyone on the other side is friendly… It looks like a fun series and there are at least three more books out so far, so I’ve got some reading ahead of me.

Getting Molds Made For Custom Headphones

I’ve had some significant comfort issues with my Etymotic ER6i earplugs on longer rides. They’re great, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve got really narrow ear canals and they get downright painful after three or four days under a helmet. I’ve been doing some research and have settled on EARInc’s iPlugz custom monitors. They’re made based on a mold of your ear canals, ensuring a good fit and a lot more comfort.

I went down to the Dallas Ear Nose and Throat Center today (don’t bother searching for them, you’ll get some other doctor’s website, which I showed them while I was there) to have the molds made. The process wasn’t too bad, a little uncomfortable when they put these little foam pieces way down my ear canals, but no big deal. The molds are on their way out to EARInc and I should have my new earplugs/speakers in a couple weeks.

Wrenching On The Jeep

While Jeff was working on the kitchen I was fixing some problems on the Jeep. My list of things to do was pretty simple. I had to replace the broken A/C selector knob, replace the turn signal/headlight/foglight switch that has been shorting out and leaving my foglights on and my battery dead, and seeing what’s wrong with my subwoofer. Here’s the post-mortem:

1. A/C selector knob – It took more work than I’d expected because the little metal bushing inside the knob was stuck on the selector shaft, but other than that it was no big deal.

2. The switch from hell – Take off the steering column shroud, undo both switches, disconnect the windshield wiper switch from the turn signal switch, unplug the electrical connection, and then reverse everything with the new one. It all went together nicely, but the new switch is even worse than the one I was replacing. The foglights stay on unless you push the switch in by hand (when it’s already in the off position). It will be going back. The original one is back in place.

3. Subwoofer – Blown and Chrysler wants way too much for a new one. It’s now disconnected until I decide what I want to do on the soundsystem front.

Kitchen Renovations – Cabinets Part 2

The paint dried overnight and Jeff and his wife showed up this morning and finished installing the knobs and pulls on the new door and drawer fronts. After that was done we got the new microwave hung. I’ve got to say that it was well worth pulling that cabinet and resizing it. He got the cabinet resized so that the new, taller microwave actually sits about an inch and a half higher than the old one. Unfortunately, that pointed out a place where the builders cut corners with regards to the backsplash. But not to worry, because Heather and I headed out to Floor and Decor and picked out some new tile for Jeff to replace the backsplash.

Pictures of the cabinets, with knobs, are up in the gallery.

The Orc King

After a long break I’ve started back in on some later works by one of my favorite fantasy authors, R. A. Salvatore. It’s another installment in the Forgotten Realms based series he’s been writing for over 20 years. There are a lot of changes going on, especially the hope of peace with a race nobody expected to ever be able to reconcile with. There are some more of the really good battle scenes we’ve gotten used to and a lot more character development than I’d expected. Now I’ve got to find the next one…

Iron Maiden – Final Frontier

I had a great time tonight at the Superpages Center (still think of it as Starplex, but…), watching Iron Maiden kick off their Final Frontier tour. The weather held, none of the threatened rain actually fell and the temps stayed comfortable.

The opening act was Dream Theater, and while I tend to blow off opening acts because, frankly, many of them stink, this was a pleasant exception. They’ve got a great sound but unfortunately didn’t have much commercial success. Check out some of their stuff over at Amazon. They did a great job and I’m glad I finally got to see them live, it was worth the wait.

The Maiden part of the show was great, they played lots of new stuff that I haven’t heard along with many old favorites. There were a few more tunes that I’d have loved to have heard them do, including Aces High and Wasted Years, but with as deep a catalog as they’ve got they can’t please everyone. Closing the show with Running Free was fun though!