Advice Post [NOT 26/9/22]

Hi, friends!

How did your day go?

We haven’t had an advice post in a while. Ask for advice, provide unsolicited advice, or talk about anything else on your mind.

My advice – go get your fall flu shot. It’s better than getting the flu and being miserable.



  1. I’m proud that someone I helped a little is moving up. A lot of people were surprised she got picked for this role as they didn’t expect a production grunt to know these things, but she earned the chance.

    I told her the one thing I realized about working in Canada, you can’t wait for folks to tell you what to do. You have to grab onto the opportunity and hold onto it like you own it. She’s  smart so I’m sure she’ll do that.

    I might be an insensitive from putting my foot in my mouth and somewhat cold asshole, but I always act the mentor to my juniors. Those that listen have done well for themselves, those that don’t… well… /shrugs/ I can’t fix arrogant and stupid.

  2. Hey there. . . . Things went well with the procedure, and I’m feeling fine — albeit with just a bit of a sore throat. I’ve scheduled the flu shot and the COVID booster vaccine for the Saturday before I leave for L.A. as well.

    Also, does anyone (particularly @butcherbakertoiletrymaker, I believe) know of a decent open-source sound editing platform that’s free and relatively easy to use? I’ve tried Audicity, but I keep getting this error message that doesn’t let me do anything with the files.

    • I’ve used Audacity from time to time — I seem to recall Windows being snippy about letting it write to any directories, and needing to dig into the Security section of Settings to give Audacity permission before it would work.

      • I have a Garmin Forerunner. I bought it primarily for running, but it will record various other activities as well. I like it, although if I get an itch to replace it at some point, I would definitely look at the Vivos.

        I think one of the things I like most about Garmin is their Connect app. It works pretty well with their devices, an Android phone, or a Windows computer.

      • I use Audacity a lot and I’ve never had that issue.

        You could also try Reaper.  It’s more of a DAW than a pure audio editor, but you can do a lot with it.  It’s free to try, and the low price of a personal non-commercial license is so low that it’s well worth it and you’re supporting a great product and community.


    • I do! Buy a Memorex cassette tape and insert it into your Boombox. Tune in to your favorite radio station, preferably one that doesn’t play ads during the intros and conclusions of songs. When a song comes on that you like, press the Play and Record buttons simultaneously.

      • Oh, trust I’m well-versed in this method, being born at the tail-end of Gen X and all. (I even had my fair amount of dexterity with the Pause button as well!)  Unfortunately, the task at hand here is editing recorded speech, and my Realistic® microphone from Radio Shack saw the landfill even before my Sony boombox-AM/FM/CD player-combo did.

  3. Tech people – is Snowflake safe to install on your computer, does it do what it says it does? Some people are suggesting it is a way to help Iranians bypass internet censorship. I’d like a concrete way to help but don’t want to download some shady app that’s not going to help them and will cause me a bunch of grief.

    • I’m not a techie but I’d be careful about installing anything on my main computer — maybe buy a cheapo used laptop and use that connected to a Starbuckyish wifi? Worst case scenario is you can format it then drop it in an e-cycle dropoff?

  4. Mrs Butcher and I are planning a trip on the Rocky Mountaineer next year. We’ll be flying into Vancouver and flying out of Calgary. Very likely flying Air Canada based on what I’m seeing for flight options. Anyone have experience flying that airline and/or flying in and out of Canada in the age of Covid? All my previous forays into the great white north was driving.

    • I flew Air Canada round trip Montreal/Seattle this summer. Download and fill out the ArriveCan app beforehand (Covid vax info). Masks are mandatory in flights and supposedly at the airports. Most people didn’t wear masks at the airport because there was no one to enforce it. Arrive early for check-in because of staff shortages (especially State side). The plane food isn’t terrible and is cheaper than at the airport (Canadian $).

    • I’ve always wanted to do that train trip but haven’t yet.  Only advice I can give is stay a few days in Vancouver.  One of the best foodie cities in the world in my opinion with the mixes of Asian & European.

    • A lot of my fellow Canadians hate Air Canada, but I’ve flown United and AA and given the option I’d rather fly Air Canada 99 times out of 100. I’ve never had any major issues with AC other than being late or slow service.

      The people I know personally who rant about AC are also the same folks who piss off wait staff and are unpleasant assholes in general which is why I take what folks say with a grain of salt. Of course, your mileage may vary.

      Also to add, I’ve driven on the road that parallels the route and the view is spectacular.   You and Mrs will enjoy it.  My parents have done the train trip from Van to Toronto (twice)… the first time was their honeymoon and 2nd time was their 20th anniversary.

      No more CoVID restrictions starting Sept 30.

  5. Day went ok here, I stayed home because I managed to get the creeping-crud last Friday-ish (pretty sure it’s something to do with this stuff, since I’ve been testing negative for Covid, it was all upper-respiratory *and* I’m feeling a TON better than I was on Saturday!).

    I’m hoping to get the bivalent covid booster in the next couple weeks, my pancreas has been a bit twitchy, because I’ve been catching “as I can” meals a BUNCH lately, which means more fast/fast-ish food than usual, and I can TELL that I’ve had more fatty & “less healthy” foods than I ought to have eaten. After what happened with the second Pfizer booster (pancreatitis) and the way I felt lousy after my 3rd (Moderna), I want to take this next one on a weekend where I can just REST afterward!

    As for the flu shot? I’ve worked out a system with my NP, and I always get it around November now, rather than in the Sept-Oct range, so that I’m still covered by that one after everyone comes back to school from Spring Break.

    Since around 5 years ago, she’s had me get that shot a little later than I used to, because it typically is strongest for 4-5 months. If I took it in Sept, that’d leave it at the “wearing totally off” stage in March/April, when our spring break happens… soooo I get it in November-ish, in order to still have coverage–since LOTS of my co-workers and our kids’ families DO go on a big vacation to warmer places for Spring Break… if I worked in a smaller district, it wouldn’t matter so much, but because we’re a LORG metro district, lots of folks go out & about, even if they stay “here” that week🙃

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