I Need a New Computer…

If you don’t read this, then it’s because my computers have realized what I’m writing, and have shut me down.

I recently went on NewEgg, and shopped around for some computer parts. Traditionally, every three or four years, my family drops about $1000 on a brand new computer.

I found one that would have two 16 core CPUs, each CPU equipped with 32GB of RAM. All of this would be supported by a 120GB SSD for the fast stuff that has to run, and twin 2TB drives for everything else. I’m seeing a Minecraft server here – if I can get 85% of the cost from the community, then I’d be more than happy to spend the remaining $500.

UPDATE: Mars’s CPU fan has started making loud noises. It is now turned off until future notice. I’m writing this from my laptop.

UPDATE #2: I stopped by Fry’s. I’m now short $550, but I have a working computer, so it’s all okay.

This, combined with a long list of other reasons, means that the Pillow observance of Earth Day on the 15th. We will, however, still be celebrating Talk Like Yoda day on the 21st.

Go check out the Pillow Cloud at http://ec2-107-21-147-55.compute-1.amazonaws.com! Does anyone need a small CDN or something? I’d be happy to set you up.

Now, story time, it is. This particular one is inspired by a post that a colleague of mine wrote. I suppose I should explicitly say that everyone who appears in this episode maps almost perfectly to someone in real life.

It was getting dark out when the manager of the hotel came out and handed out this month’s paycheck. Tom and I went down to the diner to celebrate finishing another day at the hotel. Today had been relatively busy – the usual share of families traveling East to visit grandparents and newlyweds traveling West to their new homes.

“Mr. Johnston seems a little bit happier this month.” I mentioned. Tom looked up – he clearly hadn’t noticed.

“Hm? I’ve got the same amount of cash as always.”

“I think he’s getting a promotion or something.”

Tom smiled “Finally, he’ll get off of this god-forsaken desert.” Then he noticed two of the patrons coming in through the door. “Oh, look. It’s Penny and Pat.”

We had the habit of nicknaming our customers for the day. Penny and Pat were two girls travelling North to college or something – it’s not exactly typical for doormen to ask these things. Pat was so named because she patted her bug car when the valet took it. Then she patted Tom’s hand when she tipped him. And so on. Penny is so named because she is always mindlessly flipping pennies. Tom and I went back to our dinners for a few minutes.

We were interrupted by Pat, followed by Penny, saying “Hey! You two are the doormen for our hotel!” Then they slid into the booth next to Tom. I wiggled my eyebrow at him, in a gesture that more or less means “Well, look at you. You’re trapped between two random girls and a wall.”

Pat quickly introduced herself, and started talking about how she loved the small-town feel here. It’s almost like it’s a small town. I recognized Penny as the girl who inspired my housing renovations – When Pat stopped, I asked Penny “Have we met?”

Penny replied “I think so. Are you the kid who lives ‘out in the boonies,’ or however you say it?”

“Yep. What convinced you to come back?”

She motioned towards her friend “I -” Pat spoke up, and started saying something about how they were going to visit colleges up North in Chicago or somewhere.

That’s pretty much how my dinner went, until Pat rushed off to see a movie, pulling Penny after her. I gave a little wave goodbye, and Penny nodded her farewell.

“So. Quite the talker, Pat was. Penny not so much – You know her?” Tom crumpled up his hamburger paper, and pulled out a napkin.

“We’ve met. Remember that person who crashed a car in front of my house?”

“Yeah. That was her?”


We split and went our separate ways at the door. Tom went back to his hole in the ground. I don’t really know where exactly it is. I went back to the tent I had setup in the woods, turned out the lights, and pondered some of life’s biggest questions to the sound of birds chirping away, the same way they always do, calling out good nights to their friends.


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