October 27th, 2002:

yesterday; today; help!!!

After waking up way too early for a Saturday morning, Jess and I headed out to the Chef’s Catalog warehouse sale with my parents. We acquired lots of high quality kitchen goodies at very good prices. Jess convinced me that I didn’t need to spend $70 on another knife. I don’t really need the best in forged, German high-carbon steel. Instead, I can make do with the best in economical, forged, Spanish high-carbon steel. The knives I have work great, hold a wonderful edge, and sharpen easily. There is no need in fixing something that isn’t broken.

We then went to brunch with my parents at Le Peep (whose slogan is “Le Breakfast, Le Lunch, Le Brunch”) and then came back to our place since my parents have never seen it. Then we ran to the liquor store so my parents could get some Tequila, and then to Sam’s club so my mom could pick up a set of the mixing bowls I have that she envied so much. After that, we stopped by Tuesday Morning for more housewares.

Next, Jess and I went to Thrift Town to look for Halloween costumes. We decided on what we are going to be, and purchased those things we needed to make our costumes. There was one part of her costume that we couldn’t find there for a reasonable price. We then went to my parent’s house to see if they had what we were looking for, but they didn’t. We decided that we would stay for supper. While my parents went to church, Jess and I went to Target, Dollar Tree, and Michael’s, but still couldn’t find what we were looking for at a reasonable price. We picked up some Rose’s Lime and Sweet and Sour and Target, stopped by Linen’s and Things to get some pasta containers, and then met my parents back at their place.

We made carne asada burritos for dinner. They were great. After cleaning the kitchen, we sat down for coffee and a game of Phase 10, which Jess won. In the true spirit of a good winner, Jess took my face into her hands and told me, “You did very well. You tried really hard and played a very good game. I am very proud of you.” Immediately following the last word of her last sentence, she turned around, stuck her butt in my face, shook it from side to side and proclaimed, “I won. I won. I won.”

We went to bed around 11:30pm, and, thanks to the conditional training a wonderful 8am – 5pm bill paying job provides you, I’ve been up since 6:30am (which actually means I got about 8 hours of sleep, since Daylight Savings Time ended last night). Jess is still asleep though, if Toby has things his way, she wont be for much longer.

There are a few more items I’d like to acquire to complete everything, though probably not today: some magnetic hooks to hang utensils from the side of the refrigerator; some wall mountable hooks to hang a few more utensils on the side of the cabinet; a utensil container to put on the counter top and help clear out the utensils drawer; a ceiling mountable pots and pans rack; a dish drying rack; a rug for the living room; a better garlic press; a few picture frames; a few wall tapestries; a nicer couch; a chair; a love-seat.

I’d like to spend today improving the apartment. I’d like to rearrange the Living Room, the Bedroom, and possibly even the Den. I’d like to hang pictures and plants, organize cabinets and drawers, arrange bookshelves and counter tops, lay down rugs, hang up towels, and just make everything look nicer. I’d like to hang the paper towel holder (finally) and the coffee organizer. I’d like to mount my rear-channel speakers. I could easily spend three or four days improving the apartment, and, if given an unlimited budget, several more days picking out the things I want and placing them appropriately.

Also, today, I think we are going to attempt to look for that last piece to Jess’ costume. Personally, I don’t think we’ll have any luck, so I’m enlisting your help. We are looking for large (life size, or slightly smaller) baby dolls. The condition they are in is not important. If they are missing legs or arms, that’s fine. If they don’t have any clothes, that’s fine too. If they are dingy, broken, or drawn on with permanent marker, they’ll work just fine. We need about 7 or 8 of these babies. If you have any we could borrow, or know where we could find some for less than $2 or $3 each, please let me know. If you want to lend us your dolls, we’ll take good care of them. However, it’s probably best not to lend us your million dollar collectible dolls, or that family heirloom that was originally the play-toy of your great-great-great-great-great grandmother that was once kissed by Jesus while he was hanging on the cross. You know… just in case something unfortunate should happen. Thanks in advance.

content-type for RSS elements

Phil Ringnalda talks about the problem of HTML data being present in an RSS feed. He suggests modifying the way aggregators work and the way publishers publish in order to solve this problem. “The only workable solution [...] is for all RSS producers [...] to include a content:encoded element, and for all aggregators to use content:encoded rather than description whenever it’s present. A plain text aggregator should be able to get away with just checking for < in the description, and only turning to stripping HTML from content:encoded if it’s present (an approach which isn’t likely to please a developer who only wants plain text in the first place, I’m afraid).” This sounds dirty to me.

I experienced the same frustration (for different reasons) last month. It seems to me the most proper solution would be to implement Chuck Shotton’s suggestion, originally made for RSS 0.94.

By allowing a content-type attribute for description, content:encoded, and possibly even title, and by setting reasonable defaults (text/plain for title and text/html for content:encoded and description aggregators can make more informed choices about how to handle the data they are seeing. If an aggregator doesn’t know how to display a particular content-type, it can provide it ask the operating system (or browser) to display the information for it. If a publisher chooses to do so, it can make life easier on the aggregator by providing multiple description (for instance) elements with different content-type attributes. Caution should be taken, however, to ensure that this doesn’t break current aggregators.