Monday, March 29 2021

smelly bread, peace offerings, and error codes

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Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone. Happy Monday. The mornings have started to get brighter around here. I can tell because this morning, I was up to watch the sun coming up over our backyard. I'm feeling iffy about starting another hectic work week, but I can't even bring myself to complain about it while there's a pink sky and the smell of spring in the air.

While staring at that sunrise, I thought about all the things I have to do this week. I thought about the double header of code screens today, keeping the ball rolling with our intern project, and all the prep my team will be doing to kick off another quarter. But I also thought about how this is my last full work week before I get to take a puppy vacation. The thought of leaving work behind to take a long drive across the country with Marissa and our dogs comforts me, hanging over my busy week much like the sunrise hangs over our back yard.

Sip. I can't complain today. I got a full pot of coffee, a clean pair of clothes, and a quiet house. And to add to that, we had a great weekend. Rodney and I got to explore the fascinating world of smelly bread. We were watching a Ryan's World video together where Ryan was hiding wet bread in various places around his house to observe how mold developed in different environments. The video got us so jazzed that we immediately paused the TV to try it ourselves. I cut Rodney off a slice of stale bread. We dripped some water over the top and sealed it in two ziploc bags. Rodney decided to hide it in the back of the tupperware cabinet. By the time Marissa knew what we were doing, the experiment was already under way.

"It's like all the sudden everyone around here is talking about smelly bread," she said. "Where did it come from? Why are we doing this?"

It's true - she missed the inception of our own smelly bread experiment. Marissa finds even the thought of mold absolutely revolting, so it's probably best if she's kept in the dark (pun intended). Over the weekend, Rodney checked on the smelly bread periodically.

"Nothing yet," said Rodney flinging the cabinet door closed behind him.

"It will take a while," I told Rodney. "Our bread doesn't grow mold very fast." It's true - homemade sourdough bread is a lot more shelf stable than store bought sandwich bread. Rodney probably didn't care, but I just wanted to flex.

We got lots of time outside this weekend. It was cold yesterday, but there was enough sun over our porch to sit outside comfortably with Miles under a blanket. Our neighbor smoked some meat in the driveway, and his daughter Talia played with Rodney. Talia brought over a "peace offering" earlier that day. She and Rodney got into some kind of disagreement over who would get to ride his scooter. Credit to Talia for extending an olive branch in the form of a colored rainbow that was labeled PEACE OFFERING. Rodney was quick to forgive. Even before her peace offering, Talia still made it into the mural on his pretend iPad background.

2021 03 29 ipad

She and Rodney played with our big bubble maker. The bubble maker set came with its own special (surprisingly expensive) bubble concentrate, but a quick batch of Ryan's World super un-poppable bubble mixture got the job done. Just some dish soap, a splash of liquid corn starch, and water. The two took turns chasing giant bubbles around the front yard.

2021 03 29 bubbles

For dinner, we had pork, mashed potatoes, and green beans. We sat in our hockey seats while we ate. Rodney is still a miserably slow eater, but he's making progress. He might still stay at the table for an hour longer than we do, but at least after that hour he's only about four bites away from cleaning his plate. I think he saves those for the very end so he can celebrate conquering another meal.

After the game, Marissa and I cleaned up the house. This weekend, she pretty much wrapped up her basement staircase project. The staircase walls, once craggily and chipped, were smooth and repainted. A subtle painted wood panel now covered the giant whole in our wall, which she patched and re-cut. It looked so professional, it could have fooled me into thinking cutting a hole in that wall was a plan and not an accident. Wrapping up such a huge project helped us put some more energy into smaller stuff around the house. She touched up the mural in the dining room, and together we also scrubbed out a little spot of mold high up on our bathroom ceiling that had been there since we moved in.

After all our cleaning and chores were done, I used my final hour of weekend freedom to test boot the new server I'm building. The special RAM card finally arrived. I swiftly opened the rack up, popped in the card, and stared at the dining room monitor while it booted. The boot screen hung on the exact same error code as before. I could have lost it right there, but luckily I remembered to check the slot numbers on the manual.

2021 03 29 board 1

I loaded the single RAM card in the "B1" slot instead of the "A1" slot. I hear good things about these supermicro boards, but so far my biggest impression is that they are really fussy about RAM. Technically, there is an order to how you load memory into the empty slots, but I've never worked with a board that just wouldn't boot if the pattern wasn't followed. Not to mention the silly error code I had to decipher when I had the memory wrong. Hey supermicro - if your board is going to just puke with E10 or F80 to the screen, maybe it would be a good idea to list those codes out somewhere. Or maybe you just wanted me to get the enriching experience of clicking four pages deep in a forgotten supermicro forum post from 2012 and making a best guess. Supermicro - you're my chump of the week. How dare you use error codes without publishing what they mean?

2021 03 29 2

Lucky for you, watching this beautiful build successfully boot absolved all my frustration with your oversight. Thanks for stopping by, everyone. Have a wonderful Monday.