Happy New Year And Season Greetings

The new year is always a time for change.

This is the last day of the year.

The last day of 2007.

2007 has also been a year filled with changes.

2007 was filled with three moves. We moved from Hsinchu to Sinjhuang. From Sinjhuang to Shulin. From Shulin to Banciao. We don’t plan on moving again anytime soon.

Time is running out.

I’ll have to continue this post later tonight…

Keeping It Private On Google Reader

How to keep things private when using Google Reader.

Insulated Socks And Boot Liners

I’ve realized that most hiking boots aren’t insulated. This is because if they are insulted, they don’t breathe as well. Hiking boots are really great if they keep you warm when it’s cold and cool when it’s hot.

Since I am heading into a real winter climate, I was checking out different options of liners to have some insulation on my feet. The best option would be something that includes a Polartec fleece fabric or a Thinsulate fabric. Duratherm from Gore works well too. Most manufacturers will have their own insulating materials.

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Hard Shells, Soft Shells, and Wind Shells Product Care

An Arc’teryx Alpha SV Revised hard shell made out of Gore-Tex Pro Shell material.

So you’ve just spent your hard earned cash on that shell that you’ve been lusting after and you’re wondering, how do I care for a technical shell?

Caring for a technical shell is a bit different than your usual jackets. They need specific care so that they remain water repellent and breathable.

If you notice that your shell no longer beads water, it’s time to wash it. It’s recommended that after 6 to 8 washes or 40 days of use, that the DWR (Durable Water Repellency) finish should be reapplied. First of all, don’t use any detergents or fabric softeners. You have to use specific soaps that won’t degrade the DWR finish of your jacket. You should use warm water in a gentle wash cycle. Brands like Granger’s G-Wash Cleaner Plus, Nikwax Tech Wash or McNett Xtreme Wash will not adversely affect the DWR finish. The goal is to remove the dirt that masks the fabrics water/stain repellent finish. The most effective cleaners for performance fabrics remove dirt, contaminants and odors without leaving water-attractive residues behind

Once washed and thoroughly rinsed, the garment is ready to get it’s Gore Revivex, Granger’s Spray On, McNett Spray On Water Repellent or Nikwax TXDirect Spray On used on its outer face. These will restore the DWR finish. Then, it’s time to tumble dry at medium heat. The heat will reactivate the DWR finish. Excessive heat will damage the finish, so it’s important not to use too much heat. That’s 50 minutes on medium heat (perma press), which equals to 130F (50C).

Arc’teryx recommends Granger’s products for use with their jackets. Most interesting is the Spray On UV Waterproofing from Granger’s, which adds UV protection on top of waterproofing.

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Assassination Of Benazir Bhutto

I find that following the current events entries on Benazir Bhutto (بينظير بھٹ) in Wikipedia is a great summary of what happened and the international reaction to the assassination attempt.

This entry, Assassination of Benazir Bhutto, has a complete timeline of the events and their fallout.

It is yet unclear who is responsible for the attack. Some reports say that it was Al-Qaeda, others say that Taliban supported warlords are responsible.

This article gives the international reaction to the assassination and is titled this way.

The Red Mosque incident led to the Taliban supported rebels to scrap a peace deal with the government and continue the War in Waziristan. Which would be the reason why the warlords tried to assassinate her on the 18th of October 2007. More on the Karachi bombings.

Most interesting are the charges of corruption against Bhutto and her husband by different countries. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely? Then again, this doesn’t justify the assassination. It is an attack on democracy, even if Bhutto was corrupt.

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Saturday Morning And Buxiban Turmoil

I went to bed early last light. Last night.

I was tired. It had been a long week, power naps aside. I was getting some passive aggressive vibes from my Taiwanese coworkers since I gave notice the week before.

I’ve learned some interesting news about one school. My morning work hours are spread around two schools of the same branch. It’s a bit of a hassle to go to two different places on different days, but after a few weeks I got used to it. In fact, I like the school where I spend most of my time a lot better. It’s the smaller school. At the big school, they just put too much pressure on everyone. A foreign teacher confided in me that she was getting side-effects from the stress she was under.

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Power Nap

I took a power nap today.

I went to bed at around 1:30AM. As usual, I got up at 7:30AM. It wasn’t enough. Today is my busiest day, so I only had an hour and half between classes at lunch.

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Doctor Who The Voyage of the Damned 2005 S04E00 (BBC)

As usual with the new series of Doctor Who, there is a Christmas special. This special feature length episode usual bridges the gap between seasons and is a good way to resolve cliffhangers.

With the Doctor Who franchise encompassing The Sarah Jane Adventures and Torchwood, on top of the main series, there is a lot of Doctor Who available for fans. I believe that the Doctor has never been this popular. A new K-9 show for kids will air on Australian television in July 2008.

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Christmas Problems With Scooters

Yesterday morning, my scooter broke down. On Christmas day. It wasn’t the start of the day that I’d expected. My scooter had been acting funny the day before. I’d have to continually rev it so that the engine didn’t choke. After a few hours, it was behaving normally again.

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