I’ve resolved to eat my way through our the freezer in the garage. This has been a big bone of contention between my wife and I. She’s convinced anything over about 3 months old in the freezer is “freezerburnt and nasty” and I have a difficult time getting her to prepare it. We end up throwing a lot of stuff away and it makes me insane.

So, between my new (ahem) flexibility in schedule and the need to conserve money, I’ve begun to cook it myself. Starting with breakfasts, mostly. I have a lot to learn. Like — I have to plan ahead! Stuff has to thaw. That’s why, yesterday morning, I ended up cooking those kinda crummy meatless sausages; they don’t need to thaw. But hey — they got et. Check! I tried to cook eggs at the same time. I’m not really ready for that; it’s kind of hectic and I didn’t get to give the eggs the loving attention I usually like to — lots of fussing and adding spices etc. — but I got it done and we both ate it, it was OK.

Today I got the mango sausages from Trader Joe’s, which went considerably better. I didn’t try to cook them at the same time as anything. Later I cooked an egg and toasted an english muffin and added a slice of Havarti cheese and made myself a breakfast muffin.

Shosh identified the trend and got me some things I’ll need at the grocery store, which was pretty nice. But I’m going through a lot of pans now so I kind of have to wash them right away since we don’t run the dishwasher that often. The sucky part is that it’s easy for me to get distracted and forget to come back and do so after everything’s cool enough.

Distracted, for example, by my MP3 server.

I’m using it more often too, now; it’s on an Iomega Home Media Network Drive which can serve music via DLNA and iTunes, so in theory my computers, my living room receiver (an Onkyo TX-NR906), and even my TV (!) (an Samsung LN40B650 1080p LCD) can play music from it directly. And during my time off in October I used features in my Airport Express and my receiver, allowing me to route iTunes output to the living room stereo and, by extension, the speakers in my wife’s studio (I LOVE finally using the just-in-case wiring I put into my walls during the remodel). I’m approaching nerdvana, right?

Well, there was one hitch.The server had indexed like 80,000 songs, so whenever I chose that server it would take like FOUR minutes (literally) to load the library. And I quickly discovered that you can’t make playlists from shared servers. (@%$^$%*) Finally, a problem I’ve been dreading solving for a long time:

My main folder has a lot of dupes from accidentally reripping, or consolidating libraries or whatever. Plus, that server hosts all my backups from various retired machines, iPods and (ahem) other peoples’ collections. (Like, 290GB worth!) So when I hit that server I’d have like 5 copies of Tom Waits’ Swordfishtrombones or whatever and each song would play 5 times in a row. Combined with the lack of playlisting, there was really nothing for it but to consolidate those libraries.

I guess I kept waiting for the software that would go by ID3 tag and neatly consolidate my libraries for me and eliminate duplicates. I tried a few Windows products that all sucked, and I didn’t see anything promising on the Mac. So I copied the server to a USB drive and sat and consolidated everything more or less by brute force. It sucked, and took forever. But I was really surprised at how much music I have, stuff I didn’t even know I had. Kind of exciting, actually.By the time I had finished I was down to 180GB. I suspect there are plenty more duplicates, so I’m going to go through it again, maybe using some of the organizational features in iTunes itself. But I’m already in vastly better shape.

I really like that I’m able to make music a part of my life again. It kind of fell by the wayside.