Friday, December 30, 2005

Floods in Tracy, California, watch

I went to hunt north of Sacramento on Wednesday, and saw all the area under the I-5 causeway flooded with water. At least now we know that the causeway and levees work. Officials predict that this 2006 year is not going to be like the El-Nino 1998, because the snow pack is not as thick.

Tracy seems to sit pretty for now. Like I said, our only real problem would be a big breach at Delta Mendota. The 6m is sort of lowish, yes, but it's hard to see how the lower Delta would swell 6m up even with El Nino.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Gay Nineties again

Went to Gay Nineties Pizza in Pleasanton yesterday again. Really, it is annoying to have to drive 25 miles away just to have a pizza.

When we moved to Tracy, we took stock of all pizza places. All were chains (except the Pizza and Pasta Kitchen at 11th in the downtown). By now I still remember Mountain Mike's (near Lucky's, now Albertson's), Straw Hat, Round Table. All were quite horrible. We settled to taking out from Pizza Hut at Tracy Bulevard and 11th, from time to time. It was nothing special, frankly.

I am being reminded that we have a new entrant, Pizza Factory in the new plaza near the Home Depot. I haven't checked it yet, but I do not have my hopes too high for a chain.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Mr. Hog evades me

I wasn't lucky. Not even adding "this time", because it was the first time. I did not even see any fresh rootings. No tracks either.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Floods in Tracy, California, bis

Regarding an old posting, the GPS elevation of my house's foundation is 18 feet (or 6m). As far as I know, this is taken from Mean Sea Level, which follows the geoid as much as practical. It looks like the map was accurate.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

TRASH @West: Recycling

West - Recycling
East - Garged Waste

Traffic accident

A traffic accident happened near my house today. Nobody was hurt, fortunately. However, I had to sweep the street which I swept just yesterday. The rain washed the antifreeze down the drain, too.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

King Kong

This was one awfuly LONG movie. If not for some circumstance, I'd leave at about the time of the presentation in New York. I am terribly tired now.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Groceries in San Francisco

We went to Japantown tonight, visited Nijiya Market. It had a great selection of cup ramen and udon, so we skipped Ichiban Kan.

It seems that huge chunks of San Francisco have no power. Everything west of 10th Ave. is dark, except the narrow strip along Geary, where stores may be tapping into streetlights or something. It's a good thing that those streets do not rely on traffic lights, or it would be hell.

TRASH @West: Garden Waste

West - Garden Waste
East - Recycling


This isn't Rita, certainly, but Home Depot closed their outdoor garden section for safety reasons (e.g. legal liability). They did promise to send an associate into the harm's way to be pelted by falling potted plants and retrieve that one vital item, if you asked nicely.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

(Natural) gas prices

The heating season has started. My PG&E bill this month is $141, over the previous month of $55. Wow. Bring on the electric heaters. But also, I really have to do something about insulation in this house.

The year-over-year increase is quite dramatic too. The winter 2004/2005 bill averaged about $100.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Found this while looking at leftist blogs: a copy of Tracy Municipal Code. It's surprising that Lexis-Nexis would provide access for free, it seems working.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Bluefin Sushi

Since Yoshi's is closed on Mondays, I retreated to Bluefin Sushi today. It was nice and not crowded, well served. Where Yoshi's has a decorum of a traditional conveyor-belt sushi joint, Bluefin sports a smart and upscale interior, including semiprivate booths.

Their menu takes some adaptation. I looked for a tonkatsu for about 10 minutes, but could not figure it out. It only comes as a combination.

The katsudon was good, somewhat tilted towards the egg. The rice in Yoshi's katsudon is just a little more moist and soft, but it's nothing to complain about. California roll was good, too. Do these thing tend to grow or what? I remember how I ate roll sections in one go a few years ago. Shiromisu was generic, but a good brand (not the Safeway stuff!)

The core staff is Japanese, though since I am not a fixture of the place, I decided against embarrassing everyone with my pathetic Japanese.

TRASH @West: Recycling

West - Recycling
East - Garden Waste

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Back from Trader Joe

Traffic was medium to the West, light to medium to the East. I do not like going over the hill to seek civilization, and we've got plenty of good stores in Tracy now. Trader Joe is about the only place which makes me travel across the Altamont these days. Of course, I'm a kind of guy who drives to Sacramento for the real Mongolean BBQ sometimes.

Saturday, December 10, 2005


The Record has an annoying habit of spreading their "free" newspapers unasked. I picked one today from my driveway, but my neighbours were not so dilligent. The neighbourhood brats picked the bundles apart and spread the lose sheets far and wide. The only solution I see is a class action suit for littering, Tracy Homeowners vs. The Record.


I went to send Christmas cards to the post office at 9th Street, and swung through the downtown. Indeed, retail presence is a little weak, though I've seen worse. I saw the closing Treadways store. It was a little weird to be conscious about it. I did not realize it existed until now. It's not surprising that it had to close.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005


Radio I listen for driving music:

101.7 FM KKIQ Livermore
93.3 FM K??? Stockton
102.1 FM KJOY? Modesto

Sometimes I visit the AM too:
1530 AM K??? Sacramento
Not much music, but some of the talk shows are funny.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

TRASH @West: Garden Waste

West - Garden Waste
East - Recycling

Saturday, December 03, 2005


I went to the AutoZone and saw a Pilatus PC-12 flying overhead in the westerly direction. It's so pretty. But I wonder who buys those things... It used to retail for $5.5 mln, last I checked. Probably more now. But for this kind of money you can get a used Citation. I guess the insurance and the single-pilot certification is what keeps them on the market.


This week was thin on blogging, and next is going to be thinner.

BTW, my neighbours seem to challenge me with their light displays. But I'm not buying a new set this year. I'll hold off one more time and get a LED set.