Given the number of intellectually-challenged persons I had to drive around to get home over lunch today1, I figured it was long past time to write up my best winter weather driving tips.

  1. If the weather looks worse than you feel comfortable driving in, then don’t.  Stay home and save the rest of us some headaches.
  2. When the weather is affecting visibility, turn on your headlights.  Yes, this means you mister white SUV speeding down the road with no headlights during blizzard-like driving conditions.
  3. Clean as much of the snow and ice off your car as you can reach.  This does include the roof & hood of your car as well as the windows.  Failure to clear these areas tends to cause the snow/ice to migrate from them to your windows once you get moving, so all that time you spent clearing the windows suddenly has gone to waste.
    • And you were carefully clearing off all your windows and not just a tiny viewport in the front & back windows, right?
  4. Unless the road is 100% clean and clear, double everybody’s stopping distance and not just yours.
    • When you’re thinking about cutting through a yellow light (or red if you have a death wish), just imagine what will happen if your tires lose traction and somebody is coming the opposite way2.

1 My area is currently under a Winter Weather Advisory and a Blizzard Watch.
2 For those of you lacking in imagination, it’s called a car accident.

While working on my changes to the VectorLover theme I happened to look at CoffeeBear’s stats; where I noticed somethng odd.  An ancient post (all the way back to ’04!) was receiving a couple of hits from Twitter of all places. Now I’ll admit the post was not my best piece of writing — in fact it was mudune and rather dull — so I was curious as to why it got somebody’s attention.

I checked out the tweet but that didn’t make any sense.  It didn’t help me to figure out what was going on that the tweet used is.gd to shorten the URLs. Eventually I realized that the person who tweeted my post just made a typo.  Yup, they used a lower-case “k” in the shortened URL when they should have used an upper-case “K”.  That’s all it took to send their traffic my way vs. their intended destination.  Oh well, I guess nobody really is listening to me reading my posts.  *sigh*

I recently added a couple of plugins to this site (and a friend’s that I maintain) to try making administrating them easier.  Both sites also happen to use a plugin to crosspost to LiveJournal and now things are acting flaky.

I’ve disabled the most likely culprit and now am writing this post to see if I’m right about which plugin is causing the problem.  Wish me luck.

Side note: Our snowblower stopped working during the last snow-storm.  The engine runs, but the auger stopped turning.  This weekend we got a bunch more snow, so I opened up the snowblower, figured out what the problem was and fixed it.  I fought the snowblower and I won!  🙂  Unfortunately while troubleshooting it, I also fought my vice-grips and the vice-grips won (I’ve got the blood blister and cuts to prove it).

UPDATE: My first guess was wrong but I’ve figured out which plugin is causing the problem and deactivated it. For the record, Referrer Detector & LiveJournal Crossposter do not play nice together.

I’ve been posting notes about this under New Look, but figured all the changes deserved their own post. Since I’m going to keep updating this post with new information until I decide not to, I’m marking this as a sticky post and hiding the real changes below the fold. Additional note: I’m doing the vast majority of this work over at my devblog, so it may be some time until the changes show up here.

UPDATE: I’ve removed the sticky setting from this post, as I’ve completed all the work I intend to do for now on this theme. Lastly, I’ve setup a page where any new information on VectorLover2 will be released and I will be posting a zip file of VL2 there for people interested in my version of the theme.

(more…)

As mentioned before, I’ve been going to the dentist getting my teeth fixed up after slightly more than a few years of neglect1. Monday started the next round of pain2. A couple more fillings on one side of my mouth and a sealer to try preventing a cavity from forming on a back-tooth. The dentist did a good job of numbing the area she’s worked on but even with the numbness it was still highly unpleasant.

I mean seriously the numbness only goes down so far but the vibration from their tools penetrates much further. Plus there’s the distinctly nasty scent of burning tooth from when they drill. *shudder* And if that wasn’t bad enough, my sinuses have been acting up. Which lead to me feeling like I was choking a couple of times while the dentist was working inside my mouth. See they’ve got this mouth-spreader/suction device they shove in first but if you don’t keep your tongue in just the right place the suction doesn’t work. And keeping your tongue in that exact spot gets tiring, so you move around a bit; mere moments later you’re choking.

On the bright side, I think I only have 2 more punishments visits left to fill in cavities.  Also the dentist office appears to have over-charged me on a previous visit, so I after all the fun I got to leave without whipping out the wallet.  Yeah, I’m just skipping with joy and happiness.  *sigh*

1 What can I say, I hate going to the dentist.
2 When my dental insurance says they won’t pay anymore for the year, I have to start scheduling my suffering for the next year. My pocketbook and I can only stand so much misery before calling it quits.