Dear diary readers

posted by Jason Kottke   Oct 13, 2004

It's been awhile since we've talked, all of you and I. Here's what's going on with me:

I took the day off yesterday. Recovering from sickness.

I'm trying out TextMate after hearing good things about it from Jason Fried. I'm not a huge fan of BBEdit, so I'm always on the lookout for good text editors. Still getting the hang of it.

Last week, I saw a guy almost get hit by a van while crossing the street. He was pissed and understandably so. He was in the crosswalk with the walk signal and the guy in the van was super aggressive in trying to get through; the guy actually had to run out of the way to avoid being knocked down. The guy was so pissed that when the van finally stopped to let him pass, he reached through the window and beat the driver on the head with his cell phone. As a sympathetic pedestrian, I almost went over there to help him.

You can't even begin to imagine the fascinatingly insightful concept I was explaining in this photo. Perhaps "I can't believe my eyebrows are so bushy" or "That bottle of water...it's like, whoa."

If you look in the Activity Viewer and see that the Finder process is pegging your CPU at 90-95%, ask yourself if you've dragged a photo from iPhoto to the Desktop. If so, trash it and try to empty the Trash. If you cannot empty it because the file is still in use, run Force Empty Trash, reboot, and you're golden. God bless Google for helping me with the answer.

I owe you a post about McSweeney's #13. Jesus, that was more than 2 months ago. I'm sorry. (I also owe you a Last 100 Posts roundup. Sorry.) (Oh, and I also owe you the answer to the Ken Jennings question, but I can't actually tell you what it is yet. Nor can I tell you why I can't tell you. Sorry.) So basically, I'm really behind on a lot.

I miss when this weblog was more freeform. Stupid post titles and permalinks.

Got a new camera. Results soon.

So what's up with you?

Reader comments

CoudalOct 13, 2004 at 8:23AM

So I pull up to this intersection, check the light, look both ways and begin to creep forward in my conversion van with the buff viking and the hot girl airbrushed on the side and this guy is walks right out in front of me jabbering on his cell phone, not paying attention. I slam on the brakes and the next thing you know, he's beating me through the window with his Nokia. What's up with that?

mattwOct 13, 2004 at 8:34AM

In the future all bloggers will be old people who talk too much through their eyebrows that hang to their knees. We're all turning into our grandparents. Looking forward to it.

I miss freeformedness also. Let's allocate some blame.

Jake HamOct 13, 2004 at 8:45AM

I have been using Textmate for the past week or so, and I absolutely love it. My BBEdit is still under demo mode, and I was really hoping not to pay $180 for an editor that IMO, isn't that great. Textmate has many features that makes development easy, not only in web development, but in phyton, php, perl. And its only $39!

I hope that you like it as much as I have. They really have done a brilliant job for v1.0.

flohOct 13, 2004 at 8:50AM

check out smultron mighty fine os x text editor... for free ;)

MichaelOct 13, 2004 at 9:13AM

I'm not a "fan" of BBEdit either, but as a Mac user, we are very limited in programs that handle Japanese Shift-JIS, Chinese Traditional, Chinese Simplified, and Korean encodings. If Textmate did, they would be $39 richer right now.

Greg StoreyOct 13, 2004 at 9:25AM

Jim it's lucky you weren't pulled out of the van by sympathetic pedestrians and beat to an inch of your life. Your van sounds totally dope, you should get a cell-phone jammer. Not only would it look rad next to the tear drop shape window but it might help you avoid this from happening again.

mattopiaOct 13, 2004 at 9:26AM

not much has been going on here either, kottke. work, play, sleep, etc.

ooh, new camera. do tell.

Ste GrainerOct 13, 2004 at 9:32AM

I've played around with a bunch of text editors in OS X including BBedit and Textmate, and for my money, I haven't found a better one than skEdit. Every text editor has its positive features, but very few have as many useful features for web development as skEdit, in my opinion. Some of my favorite features include:

- line numbering
- code autocompletion (including automatic xhtml tag closing when the in xhtml documents)
- code hinting
- auto-tab (makes it much easier to keep code clean/structured)
- multiple documents in one window
- a "Snippets" system similar to Textmate's

Steve BissonnetteOct 13, 2004 at 9:35AM

friend ran into the same iphoto/finder trouble ... atleast it was a good photo that caused him such grief ! ..


jkottkeOct 13, 2004 at 9:36AM

As I was walking home this evening, a little girl was riding her bike in the middle of the street...

LisaOct 13, 2004 at 9:54AM

I took my dog to the vet yesterday. He has an ear infection. Poor little guy! I also had a job interview. All in all, a very low tech kinda day.

Ash YoungOct 13, 2004 at 10:05AM

If there's something worse than nearly being hit by a van, it's nearly being hit a by lorry, thankfully I managed to hop just out of the way.

Damn lorries.

JedOct 13, 2004 at 10:07AM

Speaking of text editors, emacs and I are thinking about going ahead and tying the knot. Why put off the inevitable? Our love is like an ocean of crisp, monospaced characters. We float on spaces and surf on carriage returns and at night we lie on the beach and stare up at the beautiful syntax highlighting. Using emacs (using it well), is like editing text with a magic wand.

SteveOct 13, 2004 at 10:19AM

I found a little kitten outside my parents' house on the point of death; when I tried to give it some milk, it stretched out all its legs and just keeled over sideways. I thought it had died right in front of me. But a trip to the vet and some feeding with a syringe later (no needle on the syringe, obviously...), she's up and about and exploring the living room. Right now though, she's asleep in a cut-down box beside an electric heater.

And I don't even like cats. Except this one.

CraigOct 13, 2004 at 10:36AM

As a disable man in LA, who was without car for some 9 months, I have so much sympathy for that man. Luckily I have more trust of the drivers in LA, and am a lot more leary of people who I think will try to gun past the crosswalk, as there would be NO WAY for me to run out of the way.

Jason WallOct 13, 2004 at 10:37AM

I and another developer at work are about to launch the Alpha release for our new CMS (custom designed for the company I work for). A significant development for me.

I just don't have enough time to devote to taking photographs, I need a car (in the midwest, public transportation isn't really an option), and a laptop with portable iPodesque media storage device (read Archos Gmini 220).

I'm really enjoying the weather in Saint Louis right now. Very Londonish.

colinOct 13, 2004 at 10:42AM

I've been biking around montreal for the past two months, but today and yesterday I've almost died about four times... I'd be pretty much all about accepting that and moving on etc, except that every time has been my fault, and not even little stuff either... I'm just being an entirely poor citizen of the road, as it were. This relates because I almost got smoked by a van this morning, and I was fully at fault.

alright, that might not really relate too much, at all.

you need to stop disabling comments so often.

MikeOct 13, 2004 at 10:44AM

I've got my Ethics in the Information Age class today at noon, but I don't think I'm going to go. It's not that I'm unethical, it's just the class is a waste of my time.

brandonOct 13, 2004 at 10:51AM

So today I asked my students what career they'd like to persue. After browsing through their papers, I stumbled upon this:

"I want to be a teacher when I grow up. But I want to work at an international school because if I work in America I'll be dead since the rest of the world hates America right now and the whole country will blow up soon."

Ahh the optimisim of youth.

GolightlyOct 13, 2004 at 10:51AM

You can't even begin to imagine the fascinatingly insightful concept I was explaining in this photo. Perhaps "I can't believe my eyebrows are so bushy" or "That bottle of water...it's like, whoa."


"Yeah, anyway, so her breasts were like really lopsided, like this, and when she leaned to the left...whoa, dude, I won a medal."

Boris AnthonyOct 13, 2004 at 10:56AM

The Finder CPU usage and photos thing seems to extend to Preview as well. I had rotated a photo and closed it without saving over a week ago and wondered why my PB was hitting 60°C. When I finally found the pic listed in "Open Files" after "Inspect-ing" it in Activity Monitor, and renamed it, all was well again...

As for pedestrians and vans etc... in some cases, such as this one, sure, some drivers are asses. But always keep in mind just how much energy and effort is required to stop or turn a moving hunk of steel, aluminum and plastic as opposed to your own body... as well of course the consequences should both meet. :\

Mr. SunOct 13, 2004 at 11:02AM

True story: I was in my Toyota Camry with my 10 and 8 year old boys. I am in the left lane. Some maniac comes up behind me in a BMW going a hundred miles an hour and stays right on the back of my bumper. I am fuming. To illustrate my disgust to him, I swerve dramatically into the right lane "to let him by." I *hit* a Jeep Grand Cherokee in the right lane. Everyone's okay. It costs me ridiculous amounts of money and I demontstrate irrefutably right before my kids' eyes what a moron I am. I guess I showed that BMW jerk.

Boris AnthonyOct 13, 2004 at 11:10AM

[Whoops... hadn't noticed Stevey had already mentioned my story... heh... Hi Mom!]

AndrewOct 13, 2004 at 11:23AM

Oh, you know, stuff.

gummiOct 13, 2004 at 11:24AM

Mr. Sun, hot tip, switching on the hazard lights usually slows down the wanker(s).

yosefOct 13, 2004 at 11:29AM

the more i try new text editors, the more i appreciate vi...

Thomas EdwardsOct 13, 2004 at 11:54AM

I got my first Mac (a PowerBook) one month ago and I use TextEdit.

I've got my driving test tomorrow!

monkeyinaboxOct 13, 2004 at 12:10PM

How come nobody's mentioned this is PROOF! Cell phones are DANGEROUS to drivers! :)

hurghleOct 13, 2004 at 12:39PM

I am embarassed by how much I thrive on reading about the lives of a particular subset of bloggers. It is my non-secret shame.

AyushOct 13, 2004 at 12:42PM

I've been using vim on Linux and Windows, and macvim.org has an OSX version available. It's definitely worth a try.

Eric BostromOct 13, 2004 at 12:43PM

I've been drawing mostly. That and being nervous. Oh there was that whole trip to ireland thing too.

colinOct 13, 2004 at 12:47PM

why hasn't anyone plugged subethaedit yet?

MegOct 13, 2004 at 12:48PM

I'm lurking in what I term my benevolent dictatorship. (that is to say, I'm tucked up at uni, in my tech support pod in the middle of the law department computer room, being paid to surf the 'net. yay) All will love me and despair 'cause I have the paper cupboard key. mwhahahaha!

On the subject of crazy drivers, I almost got run over a week ago while crossing a road with the light in my favour. Some bastard in a lorry tried to drive the wrong way along a one way road. I was not happy. There was at least five minutes of rude gestures and screamed insults. If he hadn't been in a lorry, I would have probably reached through the window and given him a piece of my mind.

liaOct 13, 2004 at 12:52PM

I was out walking Jarvis the other night and almost had a heart attack when a town car nearly ran him over as we were crossing the street. The thing that pisses me off the most is that the driver apparently had no reason to be in such a fucking hurry, because he pulled over on the opposite corner and idled for two or three minutes. Maybe he was contemplating beating me up because I gave him the finger? Asshole.

BrianOct 13, 2004 at 1:00PM

So Jason, what kind of camera did you get?

AmyOct 13, 2004 at 1:34PM

My boyfriend was hit by a cop while crossing a street on his bike yesterday, and was given a $105 ticket for riding on the sidewalk (as well as a broken bike and bruises!)

Bill SeitzOct 13, 2004 at 1:35PM

In the Web2.0 shot, it looks like you may be talking to the bottle of water, though not quite meeting its "eyes". "Sometimes, I'm just thirsty for... something else. Something with a little more flavor. But that doesn't mean we can't still see each other..."

Donnie JeterOct 13, 2004 at 1:41PM

Eh. Not much is up. I'm still recovering from a minor concussion. Some fucker hit me over the head with a cell phone when I was trying to run a red light.

MichaelOct 13, 2004 at 2:01PM

Coudal, that was absolutely priceless!

Yesterday and today I spent my time trying to get rid of an online stalker of sorts (e-stalker?).

David KrugOct 13, 2004 at 2:07PM

I am glad to see you return to the days of comments. I begin to avoid blogs if they turn their commens. off. Its good to see you are back in with the comment crowd. Change is good. Don't be afraid to change your blog.

MattOct 13, 2004 at 2:08PM

You know what's new with me? I haven't gotten random, hateful email in probably 2-3 years. Back in the old days, once a month or so, some 12 year old kid would open a hotmail account and call me an "asscock" or some other nonsense, but in the past few years -- nothing.

But then twice this week, random hate mail for the first time in years. Today it's a random message telling me not to quit my day job. A couple days ago it was someone saying that my ugly glasses live up to a stereotype of some sort and that I should pull my head out of my ass (I didn't understand what they were saying either).

I believe they're both refering to the occasional post I make related to politics and I can only suspect some opposing blogger linked to me and a reader felt like sending me a message. Anyway, it's really odd to get nothing, then twice in one week.

jkottkeOct 13, 2004 at 2:30PM

I got a piece of hate mail a few weeks ago from a very prominent blogger that featured repeated use of the "c" word. I'd give you three guesses as to who sent it, but you probably only need one.

Just another anonymous kookOct 13, 2004 at 2:31PM

What's new with me? Well, I'm fairly new to your site Jason--and what a site it is. You posted this at 8am and already this many comments. Unbelievable.

Anyway, what's new with me is I'm a marketing director for a residential company who is currently in St Louis, but we've been called to Florida to help out a fellow company down there. If this goes through I'll be one helluva happy camper!

NainaOct 13, 2004 at 2:51PM

I've been drawing a lot - my Innovation Blog has lost focus since I post links to my drawings there because no one visits my Drawing Blog. He he - mixed up. I am an Innovation Consultant by *profession* and I do graphic design on the side... Learnt the difference between vector and raster today... Big day!

Jon EbenOct 13, 2004 at 3:17PM

Canadian Thanksgiving happened on the weekend for me, though I was relatively un-gluttonous because I am on a restricted diet. At the dinner we had an interesting conversation about the taste of Turkey and Proust's use of memory through the madeleines. Ah, life and its twisted plots.

NataliOct 13, 2004 at 3:19PM

Dear Jason;

What's up with me? I'm killing time waiting to fly out to Canada in two weeks time. My pitiful, uninteresting blog is fading into obscurity as I replace it with absolute nothing. The cat has stolen my seat, so I'm sat on the other side of the couch, y'know, the lumpy side where I rarely sit. It kinda sucks, but the cat is cute, so what are you gonna do? The Nintendo DS release looks pretty cool. The US elections seem kind of scary, but it's not exactly something you can avoid. Oh, and I've lost 41lbs since April.

Hope you are well;


KellyOct 13, 2004 at 3:23PM

>lia says:
>I was out walking Jarvis the other night and almost had a heart >attack when a town car nearly ran him over as we were crossing the >street.

Isn't Jeff walking himself by now?

JayOct 13, 2004 at 3:43PM

I've been making use of mine and everyone elses college tech fees by printing out a 426 page book about the role of universities as society adapts to information technologies. And that's just one of many such readings I print out to read while sitting through my more boring classes.

KimberlyOct 13, 2004 at 4:07PM

Thanks for asking!

I think I'm finally getting the hang of the manager job I was promoted into back in December. It was a real adjustment -- going from Online Content Design to having to worry about revenue, expenses and protocol. But now I'm not having to look up the answer to every question that comes along. Makes me feel good.

Nonetheless, I'm looking forward to my first-ever cruise next week. Still thinking of what book to bring with.

danOct 13, 2004 at 4:09PM

Lately I've been reading kottke.org (as usual), keeping an eye on Mt St Helens, producing a no-tables template for tvnz.co.nz, and other stuff.

I must say I really like this post - since you're usually just 'Jason Kottke - link monster', but now I see you as 'Jason Kottke - guy who actually writes cool stuff about things'.

Hope you got a Canon!

liaOct 13, 2004 at 4:43PM

Isn't Jeff walking himself by now?

When Joi Ito posted a photo of Jeff to Flickr and contaminated the previously pure Jarvis tag, I shook my fist at my screen and said, "Jeff Jarvis. Must. DIE." in my best Bond villain voice. True story.

'Jason Kottke - guy who actually writes cool stuff about things'

Don't forget "Jason Kottke - amateur soup dumpling eater"!

AnilOct 13, 2004 at 4:46PM

I've been trying to get some rest but it's like every time I come home, I have a houseguest. Also, Super Mario 3 on my GBA SP taunts me day and night. Sometimes I take a break to send you or Matt hate mail.

meikelOct 13, 2004 at 5:01PM

I am currently in Sofia (Bulgaria), discussing amongst other things our new SVG Atlas. In-room
LAN and a long cat5 cable let this post pop up in Netnewswire in my bed. Being almost hit by cars when crossing roads is the norm here.

Also curious why so few people mention SubEthaEdit. Even though I don't use Rendezvous sharing, syntax coloring and the dropdownmenu for XML IDs or JavaScript functions is what makes my life easier.

Get well soon.

wendellOct 13, 2004 at 5:34PM

I need to update my blog, but the last time I did, I got into a long rambling narrative about my eerie connection to James Dean that seems a little creepy even to me.

The one good thing about post titles for me is that Google loves them. Otherwise, I started using some of the more esoteric features of NucleusCMS (my blogging engine) to try to make blogs that looked like databases (or vice versa), and have just abandoned the whole idea...

My next TV Feature for MSNBC.com is a quiz formatted thing about somebody prominantly featured at kottke.org recently (clue: he's making even more money than Mr. k). Regrettably, their web wizzes couldn't put it in the format I wanted, but at least I was able to write all the answers in the form of a question. They couldn't even use a fun graphical header thingy I designed without starting a corporate turf war. I'll let the k-man know when it gets released for public consumption; until then, study up your Letterman Top 10 Lists about "Jeopardy!"

Meanwhile, I'm stressing over a trip to the dentist, learning to live with a low-priced laptop computer (I am years behind the rest of the blogosphere, I know), sneaking around to get my father's shirt size so I can buy him a birthday present, and, with the current sale at Ralphs Market AND a double coupon, I can get Marie Callendar's meal-size pot pies for $1.33 each. (In the words of Ken Nordine) How are things in YOUR town?

CarlosOct 13, 2004 at 5:56PM

What is that new camera? Can you disclose model name or something?

HughOct 13, 2004 at 7:03PM

Well, last week, while driving my van very agressively, I almost hit some guy crossing the street. Boy was he was pissed! It was funny, and now my head hurts...

bill0ddieOct 13, 2004 at 9:38PM

jason kottke are you taking the piss?
i keep coming back to your site for the well structured critique on all things to do with the web and geek culture. i don't read your site for freeform reflections on everyday life. i go to the pub for that.

~bcOct 13, 2004 at 11:52PM

Since you asked...

Had my busiest weekend in months, busy Friday meeting my SO's new work-friends, Saturday seeing old college buddies for their b-day celebration, including fun trip to chintzy-Chinese restaurant-cum-nightclub at the end of the night, and Sunday, saw an old roommate visiting home from school in Montréal, at a friend's house who's just gotten engaged after dating his girl for only 3 months!

In the eternal "Take BBEdit's throne" debate, for CSS/XHTML/PHP I'm currently torn between SubEtha, skEdit, and Tag (haven't seen this anywhere, but its in the lead right now: http://talacia.com/ check that out... nice UI, too) The killer feature for me is tag completion. I'm so lazy. But if you need text transformation, then BB is certainly the king.

la flaneuseOct 14, 2004 at 9:42AM

And the van driver just took the cell phone beating?! Did the driver do anything at that point?

[shakes head at unending marvels of Manhattan]

Here in the Midwest a pedestrian would definitely be hit after that. If you so much as TOUCH a car here, such as putting a hand on the hood as you cross in front of it as if to say, Hey! Wait! I'm right here, the driver freaks out and gets pissed. A friend of mine once lightly thumped the hood of a truck and flipped off a driver who cut through his crosswalk in Colorado. The driver turned around, followed my friend, got out of his truck and started going after him with a tire iron.

jkottkeOct 14, 2004 at 10:50AM

And the van driver just took the cell phone beating?! Did the driver do anything at that point?

The guy with the phone only got a couple of good licks in before the driver sped away.

SamOct 14, 2004 at 12:30PM

Talk about jobless!!!
And in particular very very scary.

wendellOct 14, 2004 at 1:26PM

That last comment isn't from jkottke... that's obviously the work of The Aristrocrats! Ta daa!!!

This thread is closed to new comments. Thanks to everyone who responded.