Friday was a fun day. A really, really fun day. Where to begin?
Just the fact that people have been responding to the blog again is an indicator that the site’s been a bit more cooperative lately, especially on the database end, so I’ve been taking the opportunity to convert more HTML stuff to database entries while I can, as fast as possible, before I migrate the site to a new hosting service. The past two or three days have seen some really good progress on the Phosphor Dot Fossils front – I’m coming down the home stretch on getting all arcade game entries moved over, and I’m making good progress through the dauntingly large number of Atari 2600 reviews.
And then, all of a sudden, that whole portion of the site…just…stopped…working. Period. I had to go peering into the SQL database manually to find out what had happened: for some reason, the wp_categories table of the database had just collapsed. Somehow, it became corrupted, and without the categorization features, PDF simply does not work. (Actually, let me be a bit broader than that: WordPress simply won’t work without that table in good working order.) So I pulled a copy of the database (such as it was) down, called up my last backup of said database, and line-by-line spliced that table back together and re-uploaded the results, unsure if I was making a bigger mess or not – I really don’t “speak” SQL so I was just grasping at straws. It all works now.
Doesn’t sound so tough? Try doing all that with a squirming baby in your lap, or occasionally deciding that hitting all those keys looks like fun and lunging toward the keyboard to have a go. Evan’s mom came down with something last night and went to bed very early, so I was left to look after him. After the lunging-at-the-keys thing got a bit old, I decided to try something out – I hooked up Atari Video Music, got some Raymond Scott Soothing Sounds For Baby going, and hooked up a microphone that Ubik gave me ages ago, so Evan could play with it and maybe pick up the hint that the sounds he was making were being reflected on the screen. He was completely mesmerized by it! For ages! That helped a lot. The Raymond Scott music is good for that because it’s very electronic and syncopated, so there’s not a solid wall of sound creating a solid wall of color on the screen. So when Evan would talk, the results were immediately discernable. If I hadn’t been so tied up with the database fix, I really, really wish I had set videotapes rolling. I may yet do that. It would be fun to have a chronicle of, and put it all on the same screen in the Avid at some point. What a fun toy! Wish I’d had an Atari Video Music when I was a kid. (I was four when it came out, so it’s not like it’d require time travel or anything.)
But even better yet was the annual fireworks war. While Evan was drinking his bedtime bottle, I set him up just inside the back door where he could watch the various neighboring families’ kids – and since I live out in the boonies, where everyone has acreage, “neighboring” in this context means anywhere from a half mile to – if I judged the delay between light and sound correctly – three or four miles away from us. The families around us generally have more money than we do to spend on fireworks (last night, if you’d had a five dollar bill, you would’ve been a richer person than I), and any one of them puts on one hell of a show. But when they all try to outdo each other? I’ve seen city-sponsored fireworks that don’t get anywhere near that spectacle. 😆 I crouched down next to Evan and watched him take it all in, and suddenly I was more interested in fireworks than I’ve been in years and years, just seeing it through his eyes, seeing him experience it for the first time.
Mom’s back at work today, so I’m going to wind up putting in yet another 24+ hour daddy marathon, but that’s not such a bad deal.