expected length of travel: 5.5, maybe 6 hours. it’s only 350 miles, and i do that to kim’s place in 5 hours on a good day.

depart the office: 1600 on the nose. in the hotel room preparing to call asleep: 0100 on the nose (ET). time spent in chicago stop and go traffic: five minutes, working my way up the skyway ramp from stony island. time spent in ohio stop and go traffic: half an hour to forty minutes, as we hit construction on I-70 about 20 miles east of the IN/OH state line. i should note that although miles and miles and miles of highway was blocked off to one lane, i saw two trucks, neither of which appeared to have anyone doing anything. on the phone to the front desk to get security to tell the idiots in the hallway to shut the hell up: 0230 (ET). (score one for security: i heard drunken laughter and conversation, then MUMBLE MUMBLE IN A STERN VOICE, drunken mumble, MUMBLE MUMBLE, then blissful, blissful silence.) i’m not normally a very vengeful person about stupid bullshit like people being giddy but i have to say that i am just the slightest bit sad that my call was not the call to result in those idiots being thrown out of the hotel. y’all, i was tired. alarm went off at 0730, but it doesn’t matter ‘cos i was already awake. no force on earth could compel a restful night’s sleep for poor sleepy niqui. … also, the christians need to change their marketing materials. i have found hell, and it was neither on fire nor did it smell particularly brimstoney. however, it was unpleasant and i don’t recommend anyone go there: centerville, indiana, where they may have a Warm Glow Candle Outlet but their one BP apparently shuts off the lights and closes for the night at just after 10 PM (especially annoying when you’re down to 1/8 tank and the car is beeping at you to feed it). what are we living in, the dark ages? closed gas station on the highway?? — and then you stop in richmond for what you expect to be about 12 gallons of “shit i gotta get gas before this road trip goes even more wrong” gas and the sunoco pump claims to have sold you 15.58 gallons instead which is strange because — you have records of every time you’ve ever put gas into your car, and the most you’ve ever put in it was 13.6 gallons, and you were pretty sure the gas tank only holds 14 gallons. plus the gauge was still hovering at the top of the 1/8 mark, so either (a) you do have a 14 gallon tank; the pump measures wrongfully and you got ripped off, or (b) you do have a 16 gallon tank, your gauge is reading wrong and in need of repair, and you narrowly averted the disaster of bone-dry fuel injectors. i am not actually sure which of these scenarios is less annoying but i will be checking my owner’s manual as soon as i make it out of the hotel this morning to see what it has to say about the size of the fuel tank. also i am cranky because i was hoping that with my shiny, lovely new tires — installed last weekend, as you’ll recall it took FOUR AND A HALF HOURS — my fuel efficiency would have returned to its pre-august 2005 levels of 32-34 mpg highway. alas, i still did not break 30. i am cranky about that whole situation. am thinking i might write in to click and clack about it actually. am tired of mechanics staring at me funny when i ask about things like spark plugs misfiring or timings needing adjustment (YES I KNOW IT’S COMPUTER CONTROLLED BUT THESE THINGS HAVE A WAY OF GOING WRONG TRUST ME I KNOW QUIT PATPATTING ME ON THE HEAD LIKE A SILLY GIRL AND JUST PLUG IT IN TO THE DAMN DIAGNOSTICS). ahem. … in other news, two linux weenie — by which i mean poorly socialized nerds, the kind of person who’ll bitterly, bitterly argue about why his choice of distro is the best and anyone (such as you) who uses something else is clearly mistaken and must be corrected at length, using as much sarcasm as possible. if you’ve been to any geekly events i know you know what i’m talking about — sightings so far, one last night before even checking in, and i haven’t even made it to the conference hotel yet. i fear for the future. … yes friends, sabrina’s cranky today.