Category Archives: apartment

Things connected with my apartment and its various inhabitants.

This is for all you geeks out there

I will liken my cleaning habits unto a garbage-collected memory management system. I store most objects in a heap (literally a heap on the floor next to my bed). When I have to allocate space to store a grocery receipt, a book I’m reading, or mail I don’t want to deal with yet, I put it on the heap. In my mind I try to keep a reference to each object, but slowly over time many of the references are lost and the objects become irrelevant.

Then cleaning inspections come along, or maybe just a random cleaning urge. That’s when it’s time to collect the garbage—to deallocate the space taken up by stale old useless objects in order to make room for new useless objects! So I go through the heap, one object at a time, and when I come upon something that isn’t being used any more, I either shred it, recycle it, or trash it. Thus the garbage is collected, the heap size is decreased, and I can happily continue allocating space for random stuff with abandon.

The main problem with this system is that I always have a huge heap of stuff on the floor, and I have to spend time sorting through it every once in a while. But boy it’s easy to use!

More conscientious people probably manage space manually, thus keeping their heap size down (to the point of nonexistence, even) and avoiding the need to do periodic garbage collection. The danger there is the memory leak—if no system of periodic garbage collection exists, allocated space will just go on being used even if it’s forgotten about.

But my metaphor is now way overextended. Ah, but we did just pass our inspection. Go GCMM!

Wasn’t Me

Accusations are being made (ahem… Gabe!) and it’s time to defend myself: no, I did not pretend to be out of the state in order to turn the thermostat down undetected and rob my beloved roommate of sleep. I suspect either an infestation of common thermostat gnomes, or perhaps a conspiracy by the management in their singleminded quest for ultimate energy efficiency. But let’s all keep a cool head lest the search for the perpetrator turns into a McCarthy-style witch-hunt. (I think I heard something about the formation of an “Apartment Un-American Activities Committee” before I took off for Washington, ((Washington State, that is.)) which is, to say the least, deeply troubling.)

I must also, as a matter of conscience, defend Kent. Based on many years as his roommate I can state without hesitation that his integrity in all matters thermal is unsurpassed. Though he is natively a South Dakotan, his time amongst the heat-lovers of California and Arizona made him aware of the devastating effects of cold on the unsuspecting and unprepared. To impugn the honor of Kent in this matter of utmost importance is insulting to his memory (may he and Dayna live on in peace!) and to his friends from every clime.

And one more thing, most important of all: knowing the accusations of hypocrisy that I will invite by so doing, I say that my esteemed, hypokinesthetized roommate must cease seeking the motes in the eyes around him until he has removed the beam from his own icy iris. Perhaps he himself turned down the thermostat in a desperate bid for attention. He’s crying out for help, help when his world is turning all wintry and fifty-degrees-ish. Come back from the edge, Gabe—it doesn’t have to be this way!