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my cable went out while i was watching television in bed late last night. there was a message on the screen about a service interruption and a 1-800 number to call. so that's what i did. at 2:30 in the morning. because how can i sleep if i don't get my king of the hill fix on the cartoon network? i almost expected the woman i was speaking to on the phone to judge me: "sir, why are you even up this late watching television? shouldn't you be sleeping?" but i think one of the first things they train you at comcast technical support school is not to judge the customers. besides, for all i know, she could be an operator half way around in the world in india when it's just the afternoon there.

she had me check to see if the cable was out in the rest of the house. nope, just the box in my bedroom. then she asked me do a power cycle, which is basically unplugging the converter, wait a whole minute, then plugging it back in. it's basically a useless maneuver that comcast makes everyone do when they call (in my experience, power cycling has never fixed anything). she said she could send someone over to replace the box, or i could bring it into the nearest comcast office myself and exchange it for a new one. the next available technician would be available sunday night, but i told her i'd bring it in myself.

my first trip to haymarket: 4 large tomatoes ($1), 7 limes ($1), 1 lb. ginger ($1), 2 bundles of cilantro ($1), and 3 bundles of scallions ($1).

from haymarket i went to chinatown. on a weekend, the financial district is a ghost town, so it's a great place to bicycle and take in the sights because you can ride in the streets (including one ways) since there aren't any cars around. i found another interesting building at the intersection of water and devonshire street: the winthrop building. built in 1893, it's boston's first steel-framed "skyscraper." much like the nearby 1896 brazer building (which coincidentally is another example of early steel-framed architecture), the winthrop building also has a non-rectangular foundation, designed to follow the natural contours of the local geography. i also checked out 75 federal street (state street trust building), a 1929 art deco building.

i was in chinatown because i had a craving for crispy roasted pork (cantonese: siu yook). there's a few butcher shops in chinatown, but i tried vinh sun BBQ on the corner of oxford and beach street. i bought about a pound of crispy roasted pork ($6.50/lbs).

i went back to haymarket for a second time because my mother asked me to get her some hot peppers. it'd also make my return route back home easier since i'd basically retrace the way i arrived into boston (all the times i've biked back have either been along the charles river bike trail or through beacon hill).

second haymarket haul: bag of snap peas ($1), 1 lb. of button mushrooms ($2), 1 lb. of jalapeño peppers ($1), a small bag of habanero peppers ($1), and a dozen navel oranges ($2). my milk crate basket was at near capacity.

the ride home was uneventful. it was a bit warm with temperatures in the upper 40's (i also had my hand warmer). my bicycle has been making a soft grinding sound recently, but i haven't figured out what it is yet. i have to spend some time adjusting the derailleurs, which is the likely culprit.

back at home, i feasted on the crispy pork. i didn't notice at the butcher shop, but there's a little bit too much fat for my liking (i prefer the lean meat). nevertheless, it was still pretty good (probably not the healthiest food though). the oranges i bought were also sweet, which is good because i can never tell until i try them at home.

i finally finished playing no more heroes. it didn't take long, less than 20 accumulated hours. the ending was meh. the play action is great and the sword fighting is pretty spectacular (dismembered enemies gush fountains of blood and coins while a slot machine counter spins for each kill further increasing your chances of gaining bonuses), but it's set in this boring grand theft auto landscape and takes forever to go from one fight to another. the story is also pretty convoluted, which speaks to its japanese origin of style over substance. it's definitely a unique game but not really one that's worth revisiting after you finish playing it.