Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

6:14 AM

It’s 6:14 AM. This is typically the only time I get to spend on here, although sometimes I might get a few minutes at night. I’m pretty heavily firewalled at work, and way too busy to spend any time writing. Maybe if there was a way to do voice-to-text in the car, I’d have more time. But I imagine most of that translation would be scattered, and mostly “um, um, uh…”.

Had a weird dream last night, the typical “it’s halfway through the semester and I haven’t gone to any classes and suddenly need to learn everything before midterms.” A lot of people have this dream, but this happened pretty regularly for me, so it’s a little more grounded in reality. This time around, I remember one of the classes was an intro to astronomy class, and I didn’t have any of the books. I had one study hall to learn the name and position of every major star and constellation. The alarm went off before the test.

I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts and audio books lately. My grand scheme earlier this year was to start a music web site and spend two hours a day listening to demos and reviewing them. I had a lot of trouble getting momentum, though. It’s all but dead since the car wreck and house buying madness in about April or so. I also found I was getting almost zero music to review, and was spending too much of my own money on iTunes, trying to track down albums.

It’s somewhat hypnotic to be awake at this hour and hear the I-880 traffic in the distance, punctuated by the rumble of an occasional train. Our view is of the port, and there’s a train line that’s usually populated with Union Pacific freight cars, and the occasional Amtrak coach. You can only see a small subset of the port, though. I’ve driven over there, and there’s an insane amount of cargo containers, almost all of them from China, probably filled with junk going to Wal-Mart. The area just up from our place used to be the 16th street station, the terminus of the UP railroad. There’s a giant grand station sitting there abandoned, unsafe since the 1989 earthquake, and surrounded by chain-link and barbed wire. There’s a long-range plan to convert it into some kind of restored mixed-use retail space, but it’s going to take years of paperwork and zoning to get it anywhere near initiation. And given the economy, nobody’s rushing to get that started. But I’m hoping in five or ten years, they get something in there.

I have to get a cat into a carrier and off to the vet soon. Into the carrier is always the fun part.