Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Project Buy Happiness Update

Well, the Santa Barbara portion of Project Buy Happiness has hit a bit of a snag.  I'm not sure whether this is because I mentioned throwing myself into my work -- but my work has decided to throw itself back on me.  It appears that I will spend this entire weekend buried in work.

I don't mind.  I've rarely had to work weekends for this job; when I do, I can do it at home; and there's a really good reason for me to do it this time.  So, no big.  But it does mean that, with the exception of a Drama Critics Circle meeting I can't get out of, I'll be pretty much hibernating in my condo with a big pile of transcript until Monday morning.  (If I'm really, really productive, I may allow myself a movie Saturday night.  Maybe.)  This will, however, mean I won't see any plays this weekend, so I'll be spending most other weekends in August playing catch-up with my six-shows-per-month obligation.  Which means I won't be able to take a whole weekend off to go to Santa Barbara, and if I do it at all, it'll have to be drive-up-early-and-drive-home-late all in one day.

On the other hand, I've made my first actual purchase in the attempt to buy myself happy.

One of these.  For them what's too lazy to click, that's a Pinnacle PCTV to Go HD Wireless ... thingie.  Which is a competitor of a Slingbox.  For them what don't know what a Slingbox is -- it's a device what takes the signal from your, say, cable box or DVR and slings it over to the internet, where you can watch (and control) it on any internet-connected PC.

Now, I'd been jonesing for a Slingbox for some time, but it was one of those purchases I decided to put off until I bought a new house -- largely because my current condo is not easily configured for a Slingbox.  Basically, you need your PC pretty much sitting next to your cable box to make this sucker work.  It can be done wirelessly, but one has to invest in additional equipment to accomplish this (either those plug-in adaptor things or a ... bridge, I think the term is.)  So I thought I'd hold off onthe Slingbox until I got a new house in which I might decide to put a cable box on the TV in my office -- or put a desk near the main TV -- or something else that might solve the problem.

And then, my pals on Woot came up with this Pinnacle PCTV to Go jobbie last night.  And while the Pinnacle item has all sorts of features to recommend it, the big one for me is that it (allegedly) just joins up with your wireless network.  In other words, I have everything I need for this sucker to work right out of the box on my current configuration.  And it would actually enable me to watch cable TV on my PC -- which would be quite nice, as all I've got in the office now is an old TV that buzzes strangely and tunes with rabbit ears.

AND the little bugger normally costs around $250, but Woot (in its one-day, one-item way) had it for $150, and I was all over it like ... Paris Hilton a Y-chromosome.

So ... Santa Barbara is up in the air -- but ... new toy!  new toy!

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