My webpage (inc. awards, upcoming events, etc.)

Monday, December 28, 2009

An Outing (Finally)

It's been quite I while since I've been able to get out of the house & not having the use of my "primary" arm has been contributing to some recent stir-craziness. To break up the monotony, Charles & I went to the Abita Creek Flatwoods Preserve the other day.

Outside of our house, there were all kinds of funky cloud formations throughout the sky.

I don't know what kind of plants these are, but they grow fairly prolifically at the Flatwoods & all of them were ablaze with surreal colors.

Considering all of our recent rains (this month's been the wettest in history here,) much of the ground was still too sloppy for hiking, so we stuck to the boardwalk.

Charles enjoying the sunset.

I'm pleased to report that all of these shots were taken with my replacement Canon PowerShot A570IS (albeit one-handedly.) It's nice to have my baby back (even though the flash doesn't seem to work.)

In other news, I'm sorry to report that the comment spammers have finally gotten to me, too. As a result I'm activating word verification (at least for a while.)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Healing...Slowly but Surely

My shoulder surgery went well. The bone spurs were removed & my rotator cuff wasn't as bad as expected. Unfortunately my labrum was worse--it had to be reattached to the bone with 2 bolts. Instead of the original one week recovery the doctor hoped for, I'm in the middle of three. Although my use is still severely limited & my pain's not completely gone, I feel I've turned a corner recently. I can finally type with 2 hands again. I'm also happy to report that my original shoulder pain is totally gone. That's a wonderful feeling.

A million thanks to Charles for all of his tender loving care. Thanks also to friends who have called &/or e-mailed to see how I'm doing &/or to wish me well, as well as to those who were kind enough to bring me a couple of plates from our recent Abita Artists holiday potluck (which I couldn't attend.)

Happy holidays (where applicable.)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Shoulder Surgery...Finally

Tomorrow morning I'm going in for shoulder surgery. For those unfamiliar with the story, I've been in pain & have lost much use of my left arm for 3 years now due to bone spurs that have damaged both the muscles of my rotator cuff and the cartilage of my labrum. My "primary care physician" fluffed me off about it (going so far as to actually laugh,) when I first brought it up with him. It's been a long road since then, but now I have a new doctor and look forward to being a lefty again.
Be back soon!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Lies DirecTV Told Me (Updated)

From their website; "At DIRECTV, we're committed to bringing you the...best customer service."

Last month I called DirecTV (our satellite provider,) in response to daily, pre-recorded messages on my machine to call them. I asked the friendly guy who answered the phone what they wanted. After looking at my account, he said they just wanted to let me know that I was getting a free month's service! He alluded vaguely to the economic recession & the upcoming holiday season as the reason for DirecTV's sudden & completely uncharacteristic generosity.
Considering that I didn't just fall off the turnip truck, I requested proof in writing. He assured me that he have something sent out & that my next bill would show a $0 balance.
Of course, my next bill was for the usual $60ish. I called back to report the CSR's blatant fraud. My account showed that, on the date in question, a "duplicate bill" had been requested (probably in response to my request for proof "in writing.") This CSR was very understanding & apologetic & I maintained a calm & professional demeanor. I requested that the issue be forwarded to their superiors & I've never heard about it again.

If you're considering DirecTV, consider how they treat long-term customers who always pay on time. If you get satellite TV from Dish Network or any other providers, please let me know what you think of them. On the other hand, I lived (very happily) without TV for 9 years in the past...

Feel free to share your stories of "customer service," good OR bad.

(Update, 12/28/09; After further contact with DirecTV about the issue--ME contacting THEM & not allowing them to just fluff me off--I was given 3 free months of Showtime, a $15 "value." Considering there's very little on Showtime worth watching, I'm not very pleased & I continue researching other TV providers.)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Astronomically Speaking

The Geminid meteor shower is coming. The Geminids have been getting stronger for years now (the website linked above explains why & gives all of this year's details.) With the New Moon coming up Dec. 16th, this year's shower will be free of invasive moonlight. The peak will be around midnight (as opposed to the usual predawn/4-6am of most showers,) but Geminids tend to last a while, so off-peak viewing should be satisfying as well. With all of the positive aspects of this shower (one of my Winter favorites,) hopefully the weather cooperates!

In other news, I completed a new painting, "Supernova" (it is not the image featured in this post, which was an airbrush work I did long ago.)
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