I rule!

Well, not entirely. I finished 2nd, but it was a VERY solid 2nd, and I beat some people I really have to work hard to beat.

I’m working on getting my head back into a very good space, and autocross as a mental discipline works very well for this. I started the beginnings of it at the test session weekend before last, and then at yesterday’s Season Opener, I was able to get there and hold onto it for what amounts to two runs — I was on my 3rd run and just *flying* when I was red-flagged due to one of the cars ahead of me spinning and taking a big hunk of course.

Dammitdammitdammit… okay, keep my head, keep the brain on that *exact* frequency…sit… wait wait wait wait wait… wait some more…. okay, time for re-run… GO!

And it was good. The re-run was on a par with the red-flagged run… and the time! Solid 2nd. Thought I had the lead, was wrong — Jason’s time was a 45.0, not the 46.0 I thought it was. So my 45.3 and change was good for 2nd. Neither one of us improved on our 4th. I overdrove in a couple spots, lost some time. Jason did the same.

So an honorable 2nd to start my year. First trophy in something like 6 years (well, first one that really mattered, from competing against a pretty big group of people).

And more importantly for me, I *do* remember what it feels like. The magic is talking to me again.

This… this is progress.

In other news… you know those “get a $40 coupon for a digital TV converter box” thing for the pending (Feb. 2009) switch to digital TV only? I got my two “coupons” (they’re actually like gift or debit cards) in the mail last week, and on Saturday I picked up two of the set-top boxen. Hookup was painless (about 5 minutes each TV), as was setup (another 5-10 minutes as I futzed with some of the other controls, not just the basic setup), and they work well. I’m impressed with the picture quality — every bit as good as my DirecTV satellite hookup, and the stuff that’s broadcast in HD is even better, even on a standard-definition TV. You won’t need the rabbit ears — the digital channels are on the UHF spectrum, so the loop antenna is what you need. The brand I got is Best Buy’s “house” brand, Insignia. They were $59.99 each, so I still had to pay about $47 for the two of them and the sales tax after the $80 in federal coupons were applied. Not complaining, just stating facts. Note that most of these boxes do not pass-thru the analog TV signals, so once they’re hooked up, you’re using the box. Which is just as well — in less than a year, there won’t *be* any more analog TV signals to pass through!



  1. I have a “coupon” from the Feds. I looked at the converter boxes at Fry’s, but they seemed costly and unnecessarily complex. I’ll have to check out the ones at Best Buy.


    1. We don’t have Fry’s up here in Michigan (though I’ve been to the one on the south end of Las Vegas), and while I’d rather deal locally, the stench of commission-only sales staff causes me to flee rapidly. And they were out of stock, too. So Best Buy is sort of a go-to place for me. Circuit City has annoyed me enough times that I try to avoid whenever possible. I take my Best Buy Rewards card and usually get what I came for, minimal muss, minimal fuss. I like that. I deliberately sought out the simplest, lowest-end units partly ’cause I’m cheap, and partly ’cause I wanted to review them for several Non-Technical People who rely on me for technical help.


  2. First trophy in something like 6 years (well, first one that really mattered, from competing against a pretty big group of people). …he’s going the distance… …he’s going for speeeed…


    1. Aaaagh! “Going The Distance” by Cake! Not a favorite. Much prefer “Short Skirt/Long Jacket”. 🙂 I actually have a burned CD of racing tunes in the Cobra I use for brain-frequency adjustment. Cake is not among them: “Jesus Built My Hotrod” (Ministry) “Scotland the Brave” (yes, bagpipes) “Trampled Underfoot” (Led Zeppelin) “Voices” (Russ Ballard) “Lightnig Crashes” (Live) “Pain Lies on the Riverside” (Live) “The Hand That Feeds” (Nine Inch Nails) “Head Like a Hole” (NIN) I reserve the right to tweak/add to that list as the mood strikes. Black CDs are cheap. 🙂


    1. I don’t understand racing… It’s really simple: fastest driver around the track wins. I came in 2nd (in my class).


      1. Well, that I understand. LOL what I don’t understand is the appeal. But, hey, I’m weird.

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