The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Brrrr rabbits!

Trivia: The last time it was this cold[1] on my commute to work was February 18th.

When cold fronts move across Chicago in November, we get slammed. Saturday's daily maximum at Chicago O'Hare was 18.3°C (66°F), and the daily minimum Monday morning was -2.2°C (28°F). In Chicago, this constitutes a gradual decline.

Yesterday, the heat gave up and went to Miami, leaving us, this morning, shivering our timbers at -13.3°C (8°F), which even I call cold.

At least the sun is out.

Keep your eye on Chicago weather and the the view out Inner Drive's office window to understand my pain.


[1] -9.4°C (15°F); in February it was -11.6°C (11°F).

Warm and windy

I think 37 kt (43 mph) winds qualify as "windy."

No one I've asked can remember a more beautiful autumn than the one we've had in Chicago this year. Until yesterday, we haven't had much wind or rain, so the trees have kept most of their orange and yellow halos for weeks.

Mornings have been particularly lovely. The low sun has hit the flaming yellow lindens and maples just so, making our daily walk to the El a delight. Or anyway, as much as a walk to the El can be, I guess.

Since last night, though, we've had steady 25 kt (29 mph) winds with gusts up into the 40s, blowing the leaves off everything in sight. Nary an elm has leaves this morning; the maples are spotty; and only our neighbor's stubborn linden, which only reluctantly has admitted that November is no time to leave the clorophyll out there, seems to be hanging on.

This is one of those days when my flight instructor, Zoltan, would look up at the total absence of planes flying the pattern and remark, "It mights gonna to be a bit vindy today, ja."

Ja.

(You can watch the leaves blow around Evanston on the Inner Drive webcam.)

The real first entry

Anne and David I'm David Braverman, and this is my blog.

It's likely that the world already has too many blogs. I hesitated starting one for many years, mostly because I didn't see the point. Who would want to read my self-absorbed navel-gazing semi-literate drivel? I mean, other than my mom?

What's this about?

I'm interested in too many things to confine this to one topic, no matter how self-absorbed it gets. So look forward to entries, at least one daily, on these topics:

  • The weather. I've operated a weather website for more than seven years. That site deals with raw data and objective observations. The blog will add some interpretation, from travelogue to actual meterology.
  • Anne. For reasons that passeth understanding, she married me, and now she's the most important part of my life. (She'd be first in the topics list except that I wanted a clever acronym—which she supplied, by the way.)
  • Software. I own a small software company in Evanston, Illinois, and I have some experience writing software. I see a lot of code, and since I often get called in to projects in crisis, I see a lot of bad code. If you want to learn something about software development, this blog might be useful to you.
  • Politics. Ask almost anyone in the world to summarize my political beliefs, and he'll probably say "moderate-left". Since I'm American, and this is 2005, that means I seem like a radical-pinko-leftie to my neighbors. I'll have more to say about this as the blog progresses. At this writing a hair more than 1,164 days remain in the Dubya presidency, so I have plenty of time.

This is public writing, too, so I hope to maintain a standard of literacy (i.e., spelling, grammar, and diction) and fluidity of prose that makes you want to keep reading.

I will not write much about my personal life. It's just not that interesting unless you're already part of it. If you want salacious details, there are many other blogs out there.

So why do this?

In the true spirit of blogging, I started this for a couple of totally self-absorbed reasons:

  • To pontificate on subjects about which I know little;
  • To get into the habit of writing every day, which my father (an Emmy-nominated professional writer) says is a good thing; and
  • To provide some usable content for people interested in one or more of my topics.

Two things pushed me into starting this. First, I read Jakob Nielsen's article about blog usability, and second, my wife Anne got into the National Novel Writing Month spirit.

So, nu?

Keep reading, and Send me mail send me comments.