Busy times – East to West and everywhere in between.

It has been quite a while, yet again, since my last update. In the extremely long gap in posts, much has changed. I have moved from the DC/Baltimore area to the San Francisco Bay area. The road trip was quite the adventure with stops in various areas, though there never seems to be enough time to see it all. Upon arriving in the Bay Area, I had reclaimed much of the feelings of creativity that had been stifled in some form or fashion back east, so I quickly got to work making music, editing video, taking and editing pictures, being as creative as I felt at any given time…. but… unfortunately, along my adventure my exquisite laptop, a Lenovo Yoga 13 (I loved that machine), was stolen. I was heartbroken to say the least. All of the creativity I had pent up and finally was releasing and that was stored on that very laptop, was gone. I must say that I *normally* back everything up religiously, BUT at that point and time, I had not been at a stable location to do such a thing so all I had done since moving West is now gone. In spite of that loss, I have not given up. I can’t let the creativity out via digital means so easily anymore, at least, not until I get a new portable machine. I can, however, use a desktop machine once in a while – all be it 5 hours away from where I currently rest my head most of the time, but hey… it’s growth. Learning lessons and meeting people and building up more creative juices that I can hopefully let loose once again. I do find some additional drive to get things done without having my usual tool around, an emphasis on doing what I can.

In my down time I’ve found that I typically don’t publicly post my creations. I find that odd. I have done so much in graphics, photography, music, video editing, etc. and none of it is out there. I’ve decided I should start sharing. After all, why else would I bother making them? I will start uploading some of my digital art to my DeviatArt account located at http://mrslickshoes.deviantart.com/gallery/ and my video works and collaborations are usually on my page at http://www.ProsenseProductions.com . I shall look around the web and try to consolidate what I find as well as scour my old hdds and computers for my other existing works and start adding music to my soundcloud page here https://soundcloud.com/jphiggs . It’s time to let some stuff out, it’s time to share ;-) *just give me some time to start getting it out there*

DC tourists beware – Parking is enforced, even if they don’t tell you.

I have lived on the outskirts of Washington DC for a long time, most of my life, in-fact. The one never ending frustration with that city is the horrifying lack of straight forward signage as to where you can or can-not park along with when and how much fees are applicable. I have not kept every record throughout the years, but the event of recent I do have available as at least a spec of proof to what I am referring. On March 30th of 2013, a Saturday, I had parked at a meter clearly marked “1 HOUR PARKING 7:00AM – 4PM MONDAY – FRIDAY”, as did many other cars on the street – none had any meters paid for, I had checked since this was a new parking area for me. I spent the day working in a building across the street and came out to find a ticket on my windshield, along with everyone else’s windshield’s as well. I was quite upset as there is no notification anywhere that would lead me to believe I needed to do anything other that what I had done. So I took pictures and sent them to the location listed on the ticket in order to have them review the situation and fix their error. Here are some of the pictures I sent (I am purposefully leaving out any with any license plates):

 1 HOUR PARKING 7AM TO 4PM MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY parking signs

The signs that apply to where I parked at.

meter ticket-redacted

The meters where I parked at. Notice the Red sticker (torn) has no additional information and none of the other meters in the area had such a sticker on them as well. I went along the whole row of meters and found 1, ONE, meter with a full red sticker that said “Saturday Enforcement” at the other end of the street AFTER receiving the ticket. It is up to the city to keep up the signage for any parking they enforce. Allowable defense includes “the relevant signs prohibiting or restricting parking were missing or obscured”  - which is an exact line from DC Official code §50-2303.05(a)(2).

On June 28th, I receive a letter in the mail stating that I either “failed to submit (either) any documentation (or) appropriate supporting evidence” and that I am now required to pay the fine OR I may appeal by both paying the fine AND an additional $10 “appeal fee”. For this appeal “there are no in-person appearances before the Board”. I am very tired of DC parking trying to rip people off, if you doubt they are, look at some of the local news stations’ reports on DC’s unfair and seemingly illegal practices when it comes to taking your money:

http://www.wjla.com/articles/2013/07/7-on-your-side-d-c-dmv-denies-parking-ticket-appeals-90928.html

http://www.wjla.com/articles/2013/03/d-c-made-92-million-in-2012-from-parking-tickets-86093.html

http://www.wtop.com/41/3339171/DC-Council-chairman-DMV-not-fairly-considering-ticket-appeals

http://www.washingtonian.com/blogs/capitalcomment/local-news/the-startling-truth-about-dc-parking-tickets.php

A quick search on Google alone will give enough evidence, or peruse the local news sites for it: http://www.wjla.com/tag/parking-tickets/

….and for advice on how to fight it (I did, and still lost, but hey it’s worth a shot, right?): http://www.wjla.com/articles/2013/07/ticketed-incorrectly-in-d-c-here-s-some-advice-91100.html and then there’s http://www.parkingticket.com if you want someone else to fight it for you (for a fee, of course).

Lack of HP support – frustration rant

I purchased a refurbished HP Pavilion PC that came in a HP SEALED box marked REFURBISHED. After starting and registering the computer, there was a pop-up that said the warranty is expired. HP support, which was no help at all, only succeeded in agitating me further and offered no real help or compromise. Instead they proposed that I purchase an extended warranty from them. The representative stated that the warranty started on the date that the retailer received the computer from HP’s refurbishing center. That doesn’t make any sense at all as a WARRANTY is not supposed to start when a RETAILER gets an item, it is supposed to start when the END-USER gets it. Would you buy a car if it’s warranty was used up from the time the dealership received the car from the factory? (Granted they don’t refurbish cars, but you get my point.)

I own a lot of HP products but since I see there is a lack of actual support or willingness to work with a customer, I will no longer invest my money in their products and I shall continually dissuade others from buying those products as well. They have plenty of competitors that actually care about their customers… we can purchase from them just as easily.

If someone will actually help me and resolve this issue, I may go back to being a happy loyal customer. Until that time I shall take my business, and that of many others, elsewhere.

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