A few unrelated observations:

1. I’ve installed Windows Vista Beta 2 and the betas of the various Microsoft Office 2007 apps. Apart from some mild inconveniences related to sound (Windows didn’t detect my AC97 audio and I had to manually install the drivers), things have been smooth. I am pleased with Microsoft’s latest offering, and IE7 and the newest Media Player are the best yet. If only I hadn’t deleted the partition table on my data drive, life would be great.

2. Shannon has been doing her best to fix me up with a cute vendor who occasionally stops by the office … she just needs to find the unmarried ones. Hint, hint. 🙂

3. My grandmother is preparing to move into a condo. She and her husband built their house more than 30 years ago, so it’s the only home of theirs that I’ve known. To be sure, it’s sad to see the “ancestral home” move to a new family — there’s something vaguely disconcerting to have such a rock of stability suddenly moved about — but this is good for Granny. And, I now have the chance to make new happy memories at her new condo.

4. Esse est percipi. Berkeley’s famous phrase — “to be is to be perceived” — is a philosophical touchstone of metaphysical idealism. But it occurs to me that there’s a less profound meaning to the concept, too. I do not ordinarily fuss much about my appearance, but I realized last week, as I was driving around, that some of what I had been doing was intended to foster a certain perception of me in the minds of others. When I realized what I was doing, I felt a bit foolish — but the temptation was powerful, and I viewed the seductive nature of peer pressure in a different light. When the goal isn’t to be one’s self, but to convey an artificial sense of self to others, the whole ethos of pop culture becomes much more obvious.

5. My dear friend Tony passed the bar. Woo hoo! I never doubted he could do it, and I’m quite proud of his accomplishments over the years.

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