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User Journal

Journal Journal: Compiling for me, then and now

So I'm compiling an Eggdrop bot, mainly because I'm working this new website, and I'm screwing around with creating a lot of different ways to allow people to pull out this information.

  Anyway, so the last time I compiled eggdrop was 1998, 99, something like that. I start compiling one just now and I thought to myself "Well now, my skills must have improved, I remember what a daunting task this used to be". Made me smile. 10 years ago I had to consult a website for painstaking step-by-step install directions. This time around I thought it was pathetically easy, even though I had a tcl version snafu.


Journal Journal: 4 Chemos later.. 1

Well, last week was my 6th and final chemo (hopefully). They didn't even bother to take an xray, as the last 2 they've done the tumor has been invisible, it's behind my breast bone after all.
Next up is a CT scan next week to see exactly what's left of the tumor, then radiation - 4-6 weeks of it, everyday monday throgh friday.

Overall, it's been a trying time. On one hand, it was easier then I thought it would be, and a routine settles in - on the other hand, now I'm just constantly tired. I have no energy at all, and I'm so out of shape. Walking up a slight incline makes me winded a bit, and walks around the block are trying - I need to do something about that though. I'm almost positive my constant lack of energy and tiredness is due to the toll this thing took on me behind the scenes.
To make up for it, I'm going to pickup an elliptical machine, this one to be exact. There's a floor model on sale for 1199$ - I'm ebaying up a storm to raise the money for it - but if anyone wants to donate $500 or so, well you can always paypal it to my gf's account at hehehe.

Overall, it's been interesting, and I pray I need no more chemos, it's getting harder even though there's a routine. Thursday get the antbodies, Friday chemo, Sat - Tuesday steroids, Thursday/Friday start feeling better again.
Except this time it's weird, I just feel different - can't explain it.

Anyway, sorry for the delay, I'll really try to write more as I can.


Journal Journal: Chemo - The second round 3

Well, round 2 went much better then round one. On Thursday, I took my Rituximab antibody treatment, then on Friday I had the actual chemo, some Cyclophosphamide, Adriamycin, Vincristine and my new friend Prednisone. The reason I'm here writing at 7:49 am after only an hour and a half of sleep is due to the Prednisone.
It's a powerful adrenal stimulant, aka steroid, and as such keeps me up and awake. Sure, it suppresses my immune system and all, but it's helping me fight my cancer.

Which, I might add, I'm fighting very well. In fact the doctor took xrays in on Thursday and came into the exam room. He told me and the girlfriend, and I quote this here "I have crappy news - just kidding! Come here!" - this old man who looks like he should be deliverying babies somewhere was so giddy as he lead us into the office.
First he showed us the front view of the xrays, with a big smile on his face, then the side view.

Imagine our suprise when we saw that after a single treatment the cancer has shrunk by almost 30%! 30%!!! Thats huge! It went from the size of a dinner plate to the size of a desert plate in the time of a week.

He didn't change the timeline, but I don't think I'll receive the full 6 months of chemo, maybe closer to 3-4. Then it's 4-6 weeks of DAILY radiation treatments to wipe out the cancer cells hiding behind the scar tissue and boom - it's gone.

Well, that's not really true - after it's been in remission for 5 years THEN it's over.

Oh well, I'm happy - feeling crappy about the fact I have insomnia today, but it beats the chronic fatigue I feel other wise.

Till next time!


Journal Journal: Chemo thus far - and one other thing

So, huzzah and all, yesterday I returned to work. The day went well, but I had trouble getting to sleep the night before, so I wasn't as awake as I would normally be. I got some good work done, which made me happy.
Didn't have the energy today - so I'm working from my apartment - it's good they allow me to do that every now and then. It's not company policy, but my boss will allow it - man he's a great guy!

So, anyway, last week I had my usual blood test, my white blood cell count was down to 1.9 so I was told to take it easy while it slowly rebuilds itself the next week or so. I start my second treatment this Thursday - odds are I'll bus downtown and have my honey pick me up and bring me to the hospital.
While I'm there I'll probably talk to the doc about having him prescribe me my ADHD drug - it's pointless to make a psyche appointment every month for 5 minutes when I'll be seeing the cancer doctor every week for the next 5 years, ya know?

Being tired. That's the only thing I hate about this whole ordeal now. I'm just always tired - I get a good 6-8 hours of being awake, but other then that it's like walking in a daze. Energy drinks (Like Rockstar or Monster, not Redbull for some reason) work some what ok, but half the time they make my mind awake but the rest of my body still fatigued.
Even sleeping 12 hours a day doesn't help much - I year for Chemo treatments now, because that's when I begin my 5 day steroid treatment. Although they aren't anabolic roids, and only serve to suppress my immune system so the chemo works, they give me an insane amount of energy - I go back to a normal 5-6 hours of sleep a night.

Overall though, like I said, it's not so bad - I've done research, and there's people that have it a LOT worse then me, like chemo every 2 days, or 20+ pills they need to take every single day. So I suppose I should 'count my blessings' as they say - though I can't wait for it to be over.

I do have one thing I'm concerned about - the irradiation. I have to ask my doctor, but from reading the DoH "Return to Work" FMLA stuff he filled out, it said "4 to 6 weeks of daily radiation". Now, I'm really hoping he meant weekly - daily is sacry to think of. While my chemo doesn't have a cumulative effect, it's staged that way, radiation does - so I hope he wrote it down in a 'worst case' scenario hehe.

Anyway, that's it for now, except for one thing - I have a craving for Chicken Mushroom curry, but can't find the damn recipe - does anyone know how to make it?


Journal Journal: Chemo - round 1 done 6

The therapy is called CHOP-R. CHOP-R stands for the drugs I take, which are C = Cyclophosphamide H = Doxorubicin O = Vincristine P = Prednisolone. The R stands for Rituximab, the newer designer drug that they start the cycle with.

The doctors are quite impressed with my strength, I have yet to exhibit typical signs of chemo, except for being tired. The worst of it for me was with Rituximab, where I experienced a mild allergic reaction of sorts - my skin itched and I felt a warmth in my chest. The rest of the drugs, well I never really felt them at all - it scared me to watch them pump it in, but I never really felt it - it was like a normal IV.
The only thing I like was the steroids - not anabolic mind you, they actually suppress my immune system, but the 'high' was there - the first night one them I was very very talkative, highly spirited, my gf said she hadn't seen me like that in some time (Then again, I may have had this the entire time we've beem together.)
I take the steroids until I tomorrow, then supposedly it'll suck as I'll come down some and be more moody and depressed.

Anyway, the treatment cycle is as follows:
Day 1: CHO & oral P
Day 2-5: Oral P
Day 6-21: Rest Days
Commence Next Cycle

So, by the second cycle, I should no more about what I can expect.
As it stands now, it's a lot of running to the doctor and doing tests to make sure things are working like they should - overall I'm in good spirits! I just need some more damn sleep! Argh!


Journal Journal: Cancer Update 4

On Wednesday I had a CT Scan for my abdominal/pelvic area, to make sure the cancer wasn't any lower then where they think it was. The good news is, it wasn't, and my bone marrow came back clean, meaning I'm in stage 1 still.
The bad news though is the bag that surrounds my heart and helps keeps things lubed up was filled with fluid!
  I wasn't even half way home when I received a call and had to come back to the hospital. In there, they inserted a catheter between my heart and the sac surrounding it and drained the fluid. Turned out there was just over 600CCs, thats over 20 ounces, of fluid in it - there shouldn't be more then 10. There was so much pressure it was partially collapsing my heart, making me feel out of breath and exhausted.
But, good news is, when they aspirated 12 hours after that they only pulled out 117CCs, 12 hours after that 50CCs and just a few hours ago only 5CCs, so it looks like I may have this catheter taken out.

  Also started my chemo of sorts - the 'smart bomb' designer drug at least. It's called Rituximab. It's an expensive designer drug specifically made to target the type of cancer I have. It tells my body to stop ignoring my cancer ridden lymphatic node cells and to attack them. It made me feel a bit flushed, and itchy and my throat was swollen some - other then that it wasn't to bad.

I'm scared of today and tomorrow though - that's when they will give me Cyclophosphamide, Doxorubicin and Vincristine - real hardcore chemo drugs. Those are the ones that also require me to take powerful anti sickness pills, and make me lose my hair - all my hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, etc - all of it.

Through all of this I also take steroids, Prednisolone and dex-something. It's supposed to help keep my lymphatic node system down some - and it seems to work fairly well.

Before, I would cough randomly, and couldn't figure out why. My cancer doctor told me the cough was due to the tumor rubbing against my trachea, and irritating it. I haven't coughed for a couple of days now, so I hope that's good.

More blood work was done today, and I'm waiting on the results of the fluid around my heart. They'll also be taking me down for another xray - they can check the tumor somewhat and see if it's shrunk any, as well check to see if there's any other fluid buildup.

Today I think I'm really scared - it's real hard to be strong, especially with my girlfriend and family here.
I especially worry about my girlfriend - we've only been together just over 3 months - I hope she stays strong, I can beat this.

Anyway, need to go, transport is here to get my xrays done!

From the 5th floor of the red zone of the Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, MN - this is Jeremy signing out.


Journal Journal: I'm 28, and I have cancer 3

Last weekend I and my beautiful girlfriend were going to take a nice romantic overnight trip to Duluth,MN and stay in a bed and breakfast. We were going to go shopping, eat out, take a lot of pictures, just be romantic. On Sunday, we were heading back down to Minneapolis to see Moby.

Sounded like a wonderful weekend, didn't it? I thought so to.

So I was really tired on friday, decided to just call in and sleeeeeeeep and get caught up, didn't want to be worn out for the weekend, ya know?
So, towards the end of Friday night, my shoulders felt a little sore, thought it was weird but ignored it. Went to sleep.

Woke up saturday with horrible pain in my chest, everytime I'd breath needles of pain would go rippling throughout my upper body. I thought, again, maybe I slept on it wrong and I'll just see if it gets better.

So, pack up the car and go pick her up - she sees I'm in pain and decided to drive - no argument here. We had to make a quick stop to the Museum of Internation Art to see an exhibit with her class. We wait in line, I'm not talking, face is sweaty, it's starting to hurt even more... Exhibit starts, I go maybe about 5 minutes into when I get nauseous and just have to sit down, so I tell her to carry on and I'll just rest.

So, for the next half hour or so, it just kept getting worse, no matter how I sat or laid or moved my body, the pain wasn't subsiding.

Finally, she comes from the exhibit and sees that I can ahrdly walk I'm in so much pain - she grabs the car, and we get rushed to the nearby HCMC.

They ask me whats wrong, take my info, my vitals, and put me in a room. More and more doctors come in to check on me. Xrays, ekgs, ultrasounds, the whole works.

I've been waiting there a good 5-6 hours in triage, the whole time thinking 'damn it, i must have gotten pneumonia, i need to take better care of myself". And then it happened...

3 doctors come into the room, all the others leave. The one grabs my hand, looks my in the eye and says "It's not pneumonia, there's a tumor in your chest, and we need to find out what it is".

Many many hours later I've been examined more and more. Finally, they decide they need to do a biopsy. So they put me under, make a 4 inch incision above my heart and extract some of the badness.

Then I go home.

I receive a call with what I have, it's called "B-Cell mediasternal non-hodgkins lymphoma". Cancer.
It only took several months for it to get to the size it is, and if left unchecked, I would be dead in another 2-3 months.

But hey, I don't go down that easy!

So today I had a bone marrow biopsy to make sure the cancer didn't spread there. Tomorrow I have an abdominal/pelvic CT scan to make sure it hasn't gotten that big. Then Thursday, I start chemo - first a day of antibodies injected into my system to prepare for the real treatment, then the next day the real chemicals are injected. I don't remember all the names, but I do recall the doctor saying that the 1 IV drip alone will be over 1500 for the drug alone.... So far, in less then 2 weeks, I've spend 45,000$ in medical bills. $45,000... thats insane.

Anyway, after that treatment, I take steroids for the next 5 days - then wait a couple of weeks and I do it all over again.

So weird to be on top of the world one second, the next you have cancer... life is strange

User Journal

Journal Journal: Eek

Argh, it looks like I'm going to end up now as 3 for 6 in my football league. I just finally got things setup too, so it'll be close if I manage to make the finals at this rate. Hasselback as QB, Deauce McAllistair and Ahman Green for RB, Chad Johnson and Roy Williams on WR, Vinatieri as kicker, and the Ravens D. It's a solid looking team, right? But somehow I keep getting smacked down - especially by one woman who managed to get the 1st round pick, then 3rd round, then 1st round again.

It's taken me quite sometime to get this team together, now let's just hope the pull it out for me.


Journal Journal: Building a battery backup system - any ideas? 2

All of these in one backpack:

  • An iPaq
  • Dual PC-card sleeve for ipaq, GPS Unit & Orinoco wifi card w/ external antenna
  • An iPod
  • RIM Blackberry phone

Now, my problem - keeping all of these devices properly charged at all times.
Well, really, thats not the big problem, everything but the ipaq is good for at least 12 hours - but since I plan on embedding these devices into the backpack, I'd like to find a simple sleek solution for plugging them all in with a simple cable outside the backpack.

As an added bonus, I'd like to rig up some sort of UPS which would keep the batteries charged for a bit after I pull it off the grid.

Anyone have any ideas on a good way to do this? I've been knocking around a few ideas, but nothing has given me the big "AH HA!" that I'm looking for.

ALSO - is it possible to connect several iPaq batteries in parallel? That might do the trick, but I wonder if the ipaq would know about the extra power. Damn, I wish I knew more about electricity.

It's a good thing that along with this ipaq 4155 I was given an older 3xxx series (Mainly, because the 4155 doesn't have a sleeve for PCMCIA, and it's internal wifi chipset doesn't work with ministumbler)


Journal Journal: This journal is now my personal swap meet

Greetings, Fellow slashdotians.

I have re-classed my Journal away from the usual droll tales about everyday life into something more useful: Hardware Requests

I've been thinking of taking a vacation this November, and as such would like to pick up the parts I need to finish up a nice slew of hardware hacking projects! Below is the list of what I need - I don't wish to pay a whole lot, so if you want me to pay much more then shipping, well then I'll probably have to pass.
Part of the reason I'm doing it this way is lack of funds, the other part is because I might not be looking for parts that are easy to find. Either way, here's the list:

  • 1 Etch-A-Sketch - large, in my dreams the actual screen would be 15"
  • 1 Set-top DVD Player - Circa 1998-1999 or so. It needs to be single disk, and big
  • iPaq or some other device that will run GPS and NetStumbler - this I know I'll pay more for, but I don't need one in awesome shape, just something that works (A small laptop would work to, I'd reckon, but not have the batt life)
  • 1 old Digital Camera, around the 1.0MP range. To be scavenged for a time-lapse photography project

More to be added later.

If you think you can help out, please email jpavleck(AT)

User Journal

Journal Journal: It's my birthday - buy me something - works! 2

It's my birthday tomorrow - I'll be 28. Help me celebrate by buying me something. (This is like the 4th year I've posted this, and it never happens - I'd probably drop dead if it did hehehe).

Oh, how am I celebrating my birthday weekend so far? Well, I'm babysitting our company's core application and trying to keep it running good until we get into our maintenence window. (P.S. - I hate Weblogic. Hate it so very, very much. Then again, we are on an old version - the newer, nicer ones aren't approved to run our app. *sigh*)

What did I get for my birthday? (Well, a day before my birthday)
The Clerks 10th anniversary edition DVD, Clerks X
The Simpsons, season 4
Jersey Girl
Clerks the Cartoon - Uncensored DVD
(Can you tell I'm a Kevin Smith fan?)

I also got my free ipod this week from - so I was totally tanked ab out that. I'm so happy Gratis Internet and their promotions aren't scams. So feel free to help me get a free flatscreen or a free PC.

Anyway, have a good one guys!

User Journal

Journal Journal: Someone - I want a GMail invite! 1

Oi! Now even my GF has a Gmail account via her blogger account, and I'm still out of luck here. If anyone would be so kind as to send an invite to jeremy(at)pavleck(dot)com I'd be forever grateful!

And now I'm off to bed hehe

User Journal

Journal Journal: My employer is on!

It's not everyday that your place of employment is parodied on

I particularly liked this part:
Then, in the spring of 2003, fraternity members hacked into the web site of rival University of Phoenix Online, erased its mascot, and placed a downloaded version on their own web site. Although no one was ever charged with the theft of the copyrighted clip art, the online fraternity was warned that further misbehavior would result in serious disciplinary action.

hehehe - sometimes I love my job. Ok, well, most of the time I love my job! And if you're in the Minneapolis, MN area remember; we are hiring!

Anyway... Have any of your employers been parodied like this?

User Journal

Journal Journal: Capella University now hiring in Minneapolis, MN 3

Hey guys, though I'd throw this out to all of you. If you are interested, or know of someone who is, email me at jeremy(dot)pavleck(at)capella(dot)edu - the link to the open IT jobs are here and we are looking for:

Software Quality Engineer - Performance Automation
Software Quality Engineer - Functional Automation
Technical Support Analyst
Systems Administrator

Please note this is a Windows shop and adjust resumes to reflect that. This is an awesome company to work for, free college (From BS to PhD, all gratis), ESOP, 401k, etc etc etc and the people are great to.

Here's some more info for the system admin position:
It's more or less a jack-of-all-trades position, in fact all of the system admins are like that. It's for a newish department, so there's a lot of room to grow. You don't have to be an ace, but we'd like someone with experience in some of the aspects of what the job description entails plus:
VBScript, Perl, MRTG, Cacti, WIKI experience and experience with monitoring several hundred servers.
One of the new roles assigned to the new Sys Admin is my backup, I'm the systems management guy and we use MOM, WhatsUp, Servers Alive, and a lot of OSS/Homegrown apps. I'd especially love someone with web application programming to help implement a new contact list.

Hey, the job comes with a new color BlackBerry! Email, phone, and internet everywhere!

Hope someone out there is interested!

User Journal

Journal Journal: Hot Damn - Sweet sweet employment! 3

After 2 years of unemployment (Well, besides consulting - but you know how tough it can be to be a consultant these days!) I'm blissfully happily employed!

You're now looking at the Systems Management Engineer for Capella University - an online .edu that is right under Phoenix in terms of users and such. It's fully credited, the place just seems pretty cool, and above all - FREE COLLEGE!

Funny... I was bitching about not finding a good job due to my lack of a college degreee, and now I'll kill 2 birds with one stone - and to top it off, the pay is better then at my last full time job!

I do have to move from Milwaukee to Minneapolis though, which isn't all that bad - I grew up in MN. I start the 29th - March has always been a good month for me *shrug*

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