Monthly Archives: July 2007

What a mess…

I’m on my laptop right now, with my main server and desktop powered down (the backup server, which runs the weather station, just has to tough it out), with insanely heavy rain, lightning, and thunder coming down (I heard a little hail, too). The way the rain is, my weather station is estimating about 3″ an hour. It’s not moving much, either, so I’m sure I’ll have great flooding photos later.

As my battery is low, I don’t want to write too much, but here’s the radar image we’re dealing with right now — YIKES!

Giant thunderstorm

Update around 1:50PM: Things are actually tapering off a bit. I went ahead and plugged the laptop into my power source. I’m still operating off wireless, so that’s good, but at least it won’t die in the middle of everything.

This has been one heck of a storm. I’m up to 1.5″ of rain in the last hour. The station is now estimating that I’ll see over 4″ of rain in an hour if it keeps raining at this rate. A flood advisory was issued for the area. Needless to say, portions of Ashley that don’t normally go underwater are getting covered. We have a very major flooding event unfolding downtown. I’ll keep an eye out — photos soon.

Update around 2:20PM: Here are those photos I mentioned. The flooding is impressive considering it’s just after low tide. Luckily, the waters will recede quickly. Here’s a look, though, at before and after…

Ominous Ashley Wake Ashley Wake 2

The Monday(s)

Stuff for today…

  • The Web group has been doing a “refresh” of the College of Charleston homepage over the last month. That culminated with its launch today. It was nice taking a site that was done in a tabled layout and literally chopping about 500 lines of HTML off. I didn’t necessarily design it — the look was mocked up by the Marketing department, and I brought it to life in code. Needless to say, we’re thrilled that it’s up. It’s the first major work that’s been done on the homepage in several years. Take a look!
  • The Subway on King Street finally reopened a few days ago, and I went there for lunch today. It looks great inside. I haven’t had Subway since my Atlanta trip in February because it just wasn’t convenient. I’m so happy it’s back.
  • I’m now watching Man vs. Wild on the Discovery Channel. My housemates have me hooked. It’s nice that I have a laptop, too, so I’m able to watch it while blogging. This show — specifically, Bear, the guy who parachutes into the forest with little more than a knife — is insane.
  • This weekend, Tom had his BlackJack switch back and forth into 3G mode, specifically after he booted his phone up. I have rebooted my phone like a madman, hoping to cash in on some accidental New AT&T 3G goodness, to no avail. This is a good sign though — is a 3G launch in Charleston imminent? If so, I will feel 100% justified in eschewing a Blackberry in favor of the BlackJack. C’mon AT&T, just flip the switch…

Today was a high value Monday — here’s hoping Tuesday is similar…

I feel a draft in here…

I have a terrible habit of starting blog posts and never finishing them. Two of them are about my birthday. One of them is about the radar gun I bought a few months ago to track pitches (and also catch speeders down Ashley). One of them describes premature fatigue. One of them is actually a followup post about the passion party that was disrupted at the College a few months ago. Ridiculous, no? I do believe some early-summer cleaning is in order here on the blog. (Other items that I want to arrive soon are OpenID authentication, integration of my weather data, and actually finishing up some content for a change.)

I made a great discovery today. There was this song on the November 2006 Weather Channel playlist that was really cool, with jungle sounds and a nice, serene piano going over it. For months, the TWC music identification community (yes, there is such a thing) has been in the dark on this song, until a few days ago, when it was discovered that the song is by a new artist named Jacob Archer. The song’s name is Birds of Paradise. It’s quite awesome — you may recognize it. I’m just frustrated now because a recording isn’t available to own yet — his album’s going to be released in the fall. Here’s hoping that’s sooner rather than later!

I’m sure glad Friday is here. I’ll be doing a little work over the weekend but I plan to make the most of it.

Peace, folks.

Stormy weather!

I’ve gotta say, those storms that rolled through at about 6:30 yesterday were pretty intense. You don’t see tornado warnings around here every day, and sure enough, we had two. The first warning was issued for Berkeley and Charleston counties which apparently stemmed from a sighting of a funnel cloud. The next warning was triggered by a Doppler-indicated rotation (though it’s worth noting NEXRAD didn’t specifically point out a TVS with this storm, it did see rotation briefly. Typically in situations in which there is a high risk of tornadoes, NWS engineers will reconfigure the affected areas’ radars for more sensitive tornado detection.

Here’s where I’m going to SCREAM about something, though — namely, Comcast’s slow as hell method of breaking in to EVERY CHANNEL on cable to let people know of a tornado warning ten minutes after it was issued. I was being texted as soon as the warnings were issued, and I timed the response between the text message (which was in conjunction with the e-mail I also get) and the display on Comcast. (The Weather Channel is dead-on accurate, as usual.) The fact that they broke in five to ten minutes later than the issue time is very likely five to ten minutes too late. If they’re going to interrupt my housemate and I watching “How It’s Made” (a GREAT show on Discovery), then they need to make sure they’re doing it ASAP.

That aside, the mini wall cloud that approached with the storm was amazing. I got a picture of it — I’ll upload it tomorrow. It was pretty amazing seeing the sky go from light, to dark in the west, to completely dark within the course of 10 minutes. I used to see this all the time when I lived further inland in Goose Creek, but living downtown has been a different story; often times, the storms don’t hold it together by the time they make it here. We got a little under a half inch of rain in the course of an hour, just enough to connect the puddles on Ashley to make things tricky. It also helped to drop the temperature about 15 degrees. If it weren’t for the storm, I’m sure the lows would not have gotten out of the 80s again. It looks like it’s going to hold steady at 75 throughout the night, and then back for more heating tomorrow. It looks like they hold a chance of storms every day for the rest of the week — a good thing, because we need the rain, but not good for the baseball fans out there. Such is a summer in Charleston, though.

Feel the heat!

I don’t think it’ll take a calendar for anyone to know that we are now in July in Charleston. How about a low temperature of 80.4° — hot enough for you? If we get some afternoon thunderstorm action — and I really, really hope we do, if only to cool things off for a bit — then we probably could set a daytime low.

Yesterday’s high temperature was 93.4° — pretty warm. I saw heat indices pushing 108°, too. Consider that this was just for downtown, too — I can’t imagine what it was like 15 miles inland!

Needless to say the heat is dangerous out there — stay out of it if you can!

Cable IS a good value!

Instant message exchange I just had. Reprinted with consent:

[REDACTED] says (11:18 PM):
my online lv [J: Low Value] dating fees will exceed my cable bill
Jared Smith says (11:18 PM):
[REDACTED] says (11:18 PM):
you know, cable is a good value after all
Jared Smith says (11:18 PM):
in comparison with online lv dating yes
[REDACTED] says (11:18 PM):
at least it works most of the time
Jared Smith says (11:18 PM):
[REDACTED] says (11:19 PM):
you can always count on channel 19
Jared Smith says (11:19 PM):
for sure
[REDACTED] says (11:19 PM):
and the weather channel
Jared Smith says (11:19 PM):
[REDACTED] says (11:19 PM):
and the 8’s
Jared Smith says (11:19 PM):
unless storm stories is on
[REDACTED] says (11:19 PM):

Seven Random Facts for 7.7.07

Well I was tagged days ago by Patrick to drop seven random facts about me. It’s convenient that today is the Day of Sevens, so my tardiness actually seemed to work out pretty well. :)

  1. I throw six pitches with a stress ball: Fastball, slider, changeup, split-finger, curveball, and a knuckleball.
  2. I played World of Warcraft for about two days. Unlike most of the free world, I didn’t get hooked.
  3. My first website had black text on a lime background with a red scrolling marquee that read “The Ultimate Windows Launchpad” in Times New Roman. It was created in FrontPage Express, which I at the time lambasted for using “strong” and “em” to bold and italicize, respectively. Eight years later, it turns out FrontPage Express was more semantically correct than its now-discontinued commercial counterpart, and I today use “strong” and “em” like nobody’s business.
  4. I first got into listening to rock music when I was in 7th grade at a Stingrays hockey game. It was the beginning of the third period when these dramatic pianos came over the PA, followed by a thundering bass riff or two. I spent a long time trying to figure out who that was. It ended up being Van Halen. Obsession: born.
  5. I listen to songs repeatedly for hours at a time. I’m very famous for this. I try to grow out of it, but you know, it’s very difficult to do. I can’t avoid getting on a “kick.”
  6. Every girl that I have had even a remote romantic encounter with, I’ve first talked to over the Internet.
  7. I am quite the procrastinator, hence why this will get submitted at 11:59. LOL.

So who are the lucky seven being tagged? How about…

  1. Joan
  2. Phil
  3. Heather
  4. Chuck
  5. Chris
  6. (Notoriously Nice) Mike
  7. Jason (maybe he can share 7 facts about the S.C. Photography Guild?)

If you’re tagged, fill out seven facts about yourself and tag seven more. Leave comments on the tagged blogs letting them know. Otherwise, like, you’ll get bad luck or something. :P


Well if one believes in luck, this is the ultimate day. We won’t see another 7/7/07 until the next century, by which time I’m pretty sure most of us will be dead.

It was a fantastic day for my friends Greg and Tanessa as they were married in a wonderful ceremony today. It was a fun wedding, complete with Greg busting a move to “White and Nerdy” by Weird Al among other highlights. I also must say that their choice in music was fantastic, especially the jazz music preceding their first dance. My coworker friends and I were pretty floored at just how good the music was. Here’s wishing them another round of congratulations and a fantastic honeymoon!

The weather is a bit wet out tonight, so the city is basically dead. I decided to stay in for the rest of the day and watch TV and the thunderstorms. I also caught some of the Live Earth sets on YouTube. Metallica’s set, in particular, was awesome. Nothing Else Matters, Enter Sandman, and Sad But True were the songs, performed with an intensity I haven’t seen from James Hetfield in a long time. He even busted out his Explorers for the set — we haven’t seen much of those in the recent past because the Explorers are a bit harder on his balky back.

In the time that I have to really listen to music, it’s been pretty much all Journey, all the time. I got onto this Journey kick at my friend Sarah’s birthday party at Mad River last weekend, I think, when “Don’t Stop Believing” got stuck in my head. Now, though, it’s “Only The Young” and “Wheel in the Sky” making the cranial rounds. “Only the Young” is one of those songs that I wish I was in love with someone while listening to. I know that’s a weird thing, but I have a few songs like that (Ambiguous Headdress by Tribe of Judah is another one of those). The vibe is just amazing. Journey has some sweet harmonies. I haven’t dug much into their catalog beyond their hits — I’m sure there are some gems there. Neal Schon, in particular, is a kickass guitarist.

It’s been a good July for me, especially professionally. My job at College of Charleston as Webmaster became permanent this past week, so I’m extremely excited and pleased about that development. My place has gotten quite a nice realignment and I’m really getting to know my new housemates, who are all great people. Needless to say I don’t spend much time on a computer outside of work — not necessarily a bad thing.

Should’ve seen this one coming, really…

Scooter’s free. It must be nice to have friends in high places. He did the crime — he should have done time. The fine is a moot point. On the week of our nation’s birth, she is not a happy camper right now. It’s sickening and depressing. You know, until now Bush was actually very judicious about how he administered pardons and such, and I liked how he was rewarding citizens who had gone on and done good after serving their debt to society. His use of pardons was admirable if not miserly. And now? I can’t even get the words out of my mouth. This is just so bothersome to me on so many levels.

(For the record: Yes, I thought Clinton’s end of term pardons were shady as hell, too.)

It’s funny how our system works. Paris Hilton serves time for a drunken driving charge, but when a guy obstructs a federal investigation, is convicted, appeals like a madman and runs out of his appeals, he gets let off the hook because he’s the official friend of the Cheney branch. Where did Justice’s blindfold go, again?

It could always be worse…

I could be walking to work from Folly Beach this morning:


This morning just seems like one of those mornings where Downtown will go underwater from a massive downpour. I’ve seen it time and time again. Good thing there’s a canoe in the back…