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Sunday, April 15, 2018

The Blue Screen of Death, and a Terrarium TV Application Failure and Apparent Triumph

I remember watching two of The Hunger Games movies on T.V. at some point over the past few years, but it was so long ago that I was unsure of the movie titles. I knew that I had seen the very first in the series.

Thus, gambling that it was also probably the second in the series that I also saw, last evening I decided to find out what the third movie is called and watch it ─ all in the hope that my younger brother Mark would be spending the night at the residence of his girlfriend Bev.

It turned out that the third movie is The Hunger Games: Mockingjay ─ Part 1. And so I gave it a shot.

It was definitely new to me.

I watched it in relative peace...until near the very end. Suddenly, just as happened last weekend, my younger brother Mark suddenly appeared on foot ─ he had gotten too drunk to risk driving home from the bar.

Fortunately, he kept his silence when finally he joined me in the living room, parking himself in his favourite chair.

And then the movie finished, and the credits began to display.

I had plans to get to bed early so that I could make the 2½-mile hike this morning to the Save-On-Foods outlet at Nordel Crossing Shopping Center ─ Nordel Way & Scott Road (120th Street) ─ here in Surrey.

There is an outlet half as far away in the opposite direction that I normally hike to for shopping, but I was on the hunt for a 4½-kg pail of Golden Boy natural crunchy peanut butter, and the more local outlet hasn't stocked any in at least a year.

I was gambling that the farther outlet ─ which opens at 6:00 a.m. on Sundays ─ must surely be a major outlet, for the nearer outlet does not open until 8:00 a.m. on Sundays.

Heck, I would be back home by then if I checked out the more remote location.

Anyway, I let Mark know of my intention to be getting up early, and then I tuned in a movie for him to watch that I had seen previously, but which I knew would hold his interest.

After the opening credits finished and the beginning of the movie was in play, I glanced over at Mark ─ and he was already passed out. 

Utterly frustrated at his consistent weak-brained display of excessive drinking, I turned off the movie and tuned in a T.V. news station and left him with that for company, betaking myself upstairs to begin readying for bed.

It was already after 11:00 p.m., and yet I was setting my cellphone's alarm for 4:00 a.m. I wanted to try and be at the store as soon after its 6:00 a.m. opening as possible.

Well, after getting to sleep, a point came in my night when I was sufficiently awake to wonder on the time, for I did not have full confidence in the alarm I had set ─ I so rarely set that alarm that I might have not done it correctly. 

It was 3:11 a.m.

I tried to return to sleep ─ this was too early to be getting up.

I must have come close to sleep ─ perhaps I even achieved it. Whatever the case, I became aware of an odd ongoing sort of buzzing noise (I was wearing earplugs) that seemed to be into its second wave of pulsations.

Of course I quickly realized what I was hearing, and in reaching for the device to turn it off, I saw that it was indeed 4:00 a.m.

I always turn on my computer before I dress myself in more that my undershorts, for I like to have the machine ready for use.

I dressed and freshened up in the bathroom, and then returned to my computer ─ only to see the dread Blue Screen of Death.

The power to the neighbourhood had gone off yesterday morning for maybe 1½ hours; but even after it was restored, Internet service remained off for a few hours longer.

I didn't meet with any difficulties when I got my machine running again that day.

Could the problem now so very evident be related to that unnatural shutdown?

I turned the machine off and gave it a second attempt to load ─ with the very same result.

A third attempt also failed:

So I next started the computer in Safe Mode.

I had no idea what I could do that would help. I probably wasted at least 15 minutes sitting here exploring options that I mostly did not understand ─ I think that I even ran the same diagnostic twice, but it found no problems.

Finally giving up, I decided to restart the computer normally ─ and this time, it loaded properly.

What will the morrow bring after I turn the machine off tonight before I go to bed?

All else I can think of to do if that awful screen appears again is to enact a System Restore ─ I have never done this before. In checking it out in Safe Mode this morning, I saw that it had two restoration points ─ one on April 10, and another at the beginning of the month.

If the power outage of yesterday was at fault, then perhaps by going back in time to four days earlier will resolve matters.

With all of the computer fuss and bother, by the time I had actually gotten ready to leave ─ and after having myself a hot beverage ─ it may have been as late as 5:53 a.m. before I was on my way.

The store was practically opened, and I had 2½ miles to cover! 

I almost backed out of the hike, but I knew that there was no certainty that I would feel up to it next Sunday morning. And I had no intention of trying the trip early on a weekday when the world would be buzzing with the commuters thronging the streets and sidewalks everywhere.

We'd had some rain overnight, but none appeared during my hike.

Also, I never saw even one other pedestrian on my hike to the store.

The trip was fruitless, however. I also failed to find any selenium ─ I wanted to resupply with a bottle of the supplement to back up the one I am presently using.

An attractive youngish female employee sought to help me locate some, but she had to admit that there was no sign of any ─ she had even tried to see if maybe one of the shelf labels indicated selenium, but had an empty space where any would have been stocked.

After she admitted defeat, I then asked her about the Golden Boy peanut butter, and she agreed that she had not seen any such 4½-kg pails in a long while, either.

She suggested that I could always fill out a suggestion slip and request it be resupplied...but she admitted that it might do no good. 

So I came home with some items that I could have bought at the nearer Save-On-Foods ─ but at least I had myself a rare five-mile round-trip outing!

I had really turned on the burners in trying to get to the store as quickly as I could, but I had burned out by the last quarter-mile or so and was just walking at a relatively normal pace.

Once I was back home shortly ahead of 8:00 a.m., I did some work on the post I am constructing at Thai-Iceland, one of my six hosted websites.

And then just after Mark emerged from his bedroom and went downstairs, I returned to bed. I doubt that is was yet 9:30 a.m.  

I had a good nap, but I wish that it was much longer. My body was also feeling the strain of the outing. It took me some time to find it in me to get up from bed; and by then, it was just after 11:00 a.m.

I emerged from my bedroom to find that Mark was back in his, apparently already seeking a nap.

He was to rise around noon.

My eldest stepson Tho was home, but his younger brother Poté usually works on Sundays, so he had evidently risen and left for work while I was involved with my nap.

Of late, Mark and I have been having considerable trouble locating functioning links to the T.V. shows we follow via the Terrarium TV application on our Android TV Box.

Mark wanted me to try and bring in something that would run for about an hour, since he had some time to kill before he headed off on his walk to Whalley to reunite with his van.

I tried one series we follow, but the links that worked all hooked up with a source that was just too large ─ for a T.V. show, we don't need a video that's 175 megabytes, let alone 250 and even 275 megabytes.

The buffering just in the episode recap was abominable ─ we gave up trying to watch the show.

Then I tried at least three other episodes of other shows, and none of them even had a working link ─ Terrarium ran right through ever one of them without finding any 'love.'

So we gave up.

After awhile, he finally headed away on his walk. I knew that he wouldn't come straight back ─ he would be gone for the afternoon.

That gave me my chance to have some exercise out in the backyard tool shed ─ if my body could handle it after the morning's unexpectedly challenging rigours.

My arms and shoulders weren't feeling too bad, though. And so it was that I somehow managed to do rather well, yet again achieving two more repetitions in the first of four sets of pull-ups than had been my expected norm for many recent weeks.

I think that this was at least the third consecutive day that I have managed to force out those two extra repetitions.

With the exercising done, I was free to come inside the house and fix up my first meal of the day. I had grown decidedly hungry.

After eating, I started working on this post, and then I got sidetracked in a search to see if other people have mentioned having issues finding working links for T.V. shows with Terrarium TV.

I then found a number of articles that indicated that perhaps not a full week ago, the Terrarium TV application had undergone an upgrade to version 1.9.8.

So what version did we have, then?

A check revealed that we had version 1.9.3.

Then how come we have never been delivered a notification of any of the upgrades? 

I had to research how to find a new APK file, and just how to negotiate getting it activated in our Android TV Box.

It took time, but it would seem that I have succeeded.

And not only that ─ I checked out an episode for a T.V. show that I have failed to get any working links for in at least two weeks, and there have been a couple of others in the same plight of more recent vintage.

Almost unbelievably, that episode I sampled is absolutely pregnant with possibilities that I recognize as being most likely very reliable sources.

So now this evening, Mark and I can catch up on those shows' unavailable episodes ─ I am almost eager to get at them!

Now if only my computer loads correctly tomorrow morning, then I will be a relatively happy 68-year-old ─ despite being in deep debt and feeling myself to be thereby housebound in my very own debtors' prison. 

Mark often comes home extra early on Sundays ─ last week, it wasn't quite yet 5:30 p.m., if I am remembering aright. 

Since it is already after 5:00 p.m., I believe that I am going to cut today's post short and finish it now with this old journal entry of mine from 41 years ago when I was 27 years old, and living in a basement housekeeping unit in New Westminster.

I was renting my gloomy den in a private home located on Ninth Street [Google map], and two houses up from Third Avenue.
FRIDAY, April 15, 1977

I arose 7:45 a.m. after an enjoyable dream. With others, and David Prince was one, I seemed to be on Vancouver Island on a trail similar to the Pacific Crest, heading north in snow. It was good to be doing.

[Philip David Prince was an old friend with whom I had shared many imaginary adventures, and a few genuine ones involving considerable suffering.]

It's raining today, but I got both cheques cashed.

[One was my latest $146 Unemployment Insurance cheque; the other a $30 personal cheque Mark wanted me to cash for him.]

I went to Army & Navy for a pair of joggers, but the tables were covered with ladies shoes, and a hot sale much in progress. In irritation I went to the shop next door and bought a pair of 'Fastrak' joggers for a $9.62 total.

Then I went to Prince's Health Foods for a nut butter maker, but was unhappy with the product for sale. I spoke with the very pretty brunette clerking, and finally settled on a 'Salton' ice cream machine for the huge sum of $32.05 in all; mom had best be satisfied with this birthday gift!

I next visited the library briefly, then at Woodward's bought a $5 money order and some stamps, discarded my intention of getting a new jacket (too short), and bought 20 lbs of Ellison's whole wheat flour ($2.79).

I played Onan, the scintillating moment arriving about 3:15 p.m.

Mark came for his $30 about 4:30 p.m., saying Chris claims he's had it with Melody.

[Melody St. Jean was my 20-year-old ex-girlfriend, and Chris her new boyfriend with whom she was living ─ less than a half-mile from where Mark was living out in Surrey. Chris was a co-worker of Mark.]

I gave Mark a 20 lb of flour to transport to his place for me, and mom's ice-cream machine.

My bedtime will be at 9:00 p.m.

I am yearning ─ craving ─ for food again ─ in enormous quantities. If I were a rich man independent of society, I could eat a full meal, and walk it off by travelling great distances afoot beyond the sight of man, bodybuilding and studying to my heart's delight.
I loved knowledge, and always wanted my own private library somewhere far from people. It would have been Paradise for me to be that wealthy, studying whatever topic matter I chose, and perfecting my physique with the best diet and equipment.

Life would have been a blessed adventure.

But it was never to be....
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