Monday, November 5, 2007

White Caps

There are lots of white caps on the waves outside, but not as many as inside the ship.

There's more white hair on this boat than a polar bear convention. You'll notice in my bio photo that I've bleached my hair to fit in with the majority of passengers here. People are coming up to me and saying stuff like "Hey, you're the guy who's with the really young girl with dark colored hair." Just joking. Really. Probably no more than 98% of us have white hair. Most of them aren't prematurely white like me though.

I bumped into Elizabeth Thornton on the buffet line. She's just returned from a shore excursion to Half Moon Cay, here in the Bahamas. She mentioned something about tacky tourist shops and huge, overweight tourists walking on the beach. So I guess it's not Bay Watch over there on ol' Half Moon Cay. More like Full Moon Cay or something. She seemed grateful that most of the beach waddlers were wearing clothes instead of thongs. I didn't see it because I chose to stay on the ship and waddle around here.

Speaking of waddling, I checked out the health spa. Nice workout equipment (treadmills, bikes, etc) looking out a big window towards the bow of the ship. I think I'll do a daily workout there. Starting tomorrow. Or sometime real soon.

Robin went to an afternoon performance by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival actors. The performance was cancelled because costumes and props weren't delivered. Or some kind of story like that. It's unclear if the props and costumes are going to get here eventually, or if they're actually on the ship somewhere, or what's going on. At least it's unclear to me, but most things are unclear to me because I've got white hair. The Festival's artistic director stepped in with a Q&A session that Robin says was interesting.

As part of Robin's presentations, she prepared a daily Shakespeare quiz to be left each night at the door of Shakespeare at Sea attendees. A nice surprise, and beautifully designed stuff. She's good that way. She's been spending most of her time in the room putting finishing touches on her presentations.

While she was at the Shakespeare presentation, I attended the MacMania presentation "Amazing Mac Utilities" by Randal Schwartz. It was a very fast paced overview of cool, mostly free utilities that you can find at He covered about a hundred utilities, so there wasn't time for demos.

Some of the coolest sounding stuff: SoundSource -- automatically smooth out audio levels in a podcast or other audio track; AOL Radio -- listen to XM radio for free (200 streaming radio stations); iVisualize -- use Mac's Quartz Composer to create visualizers (the visual effects in iTunes); SuperDuper -- disk cloner and backup utility that can create a bootable drive; Adium X -- a multi-protocol chat client; Hoverdash -- lets you easily float selected widgets on the Desktop; Podmailing -- send files by email, regardless of size; iPod Disk -- copy music from your iPod to your computer; VisualHub -- convert any video format to any other video format; and more. much more.

I missed the semi-formal dinner last night due to motion sickness, but tonight I was OK, even thought the boat was swaying quite a bit. Gotta love those pills. Sharing our table were four people from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival: two actors, Michael Elich and Robin Goodrin Nordli: Ms Briggs, a Festival patron; and Kimberly Jean Barry, the Festival's Production Stage Manager. Robin Nordli also missed dinner last night because of motion sickness, so that made me feel less like a cruise-wimp. The actors are hoping their costumes and props (swords, most importantly) catch up with us in Aruba on Tuesday. Especially since expert stage fighting is one of their special skills.

The stage show after dinner featuring (hmm, I forget) Somebody James from Chicago, a juggler/comedy guy was entertaining in a cruise ship sort of way. Funny and corny. And good juggling.

I'm sitting in the "Maximizing iPhoto" presentation by Derrick Story. Later today it's "One finger automation tricks in Leopard" by Sal Soghoian.

Robin is attending "Elizabethan Violence in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet" and "An Insider's Guide to the 2008 Season." (Referring to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival season.)

Smooth water, we're passing between Cuba and Haiti.