Donna Crawford
Redondo Beach, California


I was born in North Carolina and lived there until I was about 2 or so.  My father was in the military, so we moved every year or two.  We lived up and down the east coast, in Arkansas, Germany and Kansas, before he retired in 1980.  I attended Manhattan High School (in Kansas) and college and law school at the University of Kansas (Go Jayhawks!!).

I've lived in Alabama, Georgia, Texas and California since leaving my parents' home.  I currently live in California with my husband Kirk (even while we were on our RTW, we considered California as home). My family and friends are scattered all over the place, as you can imagine.

My husband and I are highly involved with our church, locally. I have lots of hobbies, including cooking, HAM radio, reading, travelling, bzflag, and sports/outdoor activities. Although I love to watch Jayhawk Basketball, I generally prefer to participate. Some of my favorites are beach volleyball, scuba diving, cycling, rowing, swimming, snow skiing, tramping, surfing, off-roading, etc.

My travels over the last few years have taken me to Costa Rica, Hawaii, Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, and most recently, on a 15-country, 1-year round-the-world trip.

Feel free to drop me an email to let me know how you're doing, or any other suggestions you have for these pages! And be sure to sign my new Guestbook!

Recent Articles

Monday, March 19


Can Launch?

Originally, I wasn't going to post this, but in light of today's UserFriendly Comic, I just have to! For those of you who don't drink beer, think of it as a "Can Launcher".

And the UserFriendly:

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Saturday, November 11


Fun with irssi

So recently, I decided to change from using XChat to using irssi for accessing irc. I had a LOT of help from several folks on the freenode network. In addition, I spent hours perusing the documentation at the official irssi website. It took me a full week to get the settings tweaked to be similar to (or even an improvement on) what I had with xchat.

Since then, I've been slowly adding new scripts and adding other tweaks. Irssi is wonderfully configurable.

One of my annoyances early on, was my tendency to "lose" windows - either channel windows, but more often private message windows. My friend Dennis ([dmp]) got tired of my complaining and constantly asking him to PM me so I could find the right window and he wrote me a nice little script, There is an existing script on the irssi site called, but I found that it was more complex and frankly didn't have some of the basic functionality I wanted. With, I can simply type "/wnn err" and it will take me to the first window (whether channel or pm) that has "err" in the name. If I type it again, it takes me to the next one. The script is clean and easy to use (and Dennis has added functionality as we realized some things using it). Thanks, Dennis!

And yay for irssi! It's a little hard to set up, but well worth the effort!

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Thursday, September 21


Birthday Fun, the Answer Age

Well, birthdays are supposed to be fun, right? I mean, I realize many people get to a certain age and simply just dread turning another year. But birthdays should be a celebration! Well, this year, mine was.

First of all, my wonderful husband was home. For the first time in five years, my birthday managed to fall on a day when he wasn't traveling or otherwise unescapably commited. Last year, he flew to Australia. The two years before were the men's retreat. The first year we were married, he was a groomsman in our best man's wedding and the bachelor party was that night. This year? This year, he was scheduled to fly to Maui the day before my birthday. When told of the impending schedule, he told them that if he wasn't home on my birthday this year, he'd have no home to return to. (He was, of course, kidding; however, the gesture and his determination to be here was greatly appreciated!)

I received a couple of birthday greetings a day or two early. On the night before my birthday, I was playing bzflag with some friends of mine. One is in Germany (Bernie) and one in Utah (Sol). Well, it was certainly my birthdate in Germany - and Bernie was sure to let me know! He not only wished me happy birthday repeatedly, he wouldn't let me sign off until it was my birthday HERE so he could "officially" wish me a happy birthday! Finally, a while after midnight, I said goodnight to Sol & Bernie and got some sleep.

In the morning, Kirk surprised me by setting up a special playlist on iTunes - all containing songs with "birthday", "happy" and "I love you" themes, like "Birthday" (The Beatles), "A Happy Ending" (The Princess Bride Soundtrack), "Donna" (Los Lobos), "The Girl I Love" (Tony Bennett) and "So Happy Together" (The Turtles). It was incredibly sweet and fun! We chatted for a while and finally he had to head off to work. I listened to that playlist all day.

On irc, we have our own channel - it's a small little place (##essy) that a number of bzflaggers and a few other friends visit. Well, Kirk had changed the topic on the channel to let everyone know it was my birthday. Consequently, people were cheerful and fun and we had a sort of virtual party there during the day. One of my GU teammates, romfis, had spammed most of the irc channels along with each team I'm on with a link to the GU Forums, where NTH had posted a birthday topic for me. Kierra did the same on the ducati forums. I was surprised to see a greeting from one of my teammates who, just a few months ago, complained about the posting of "birthday topics". So many people went out of their way to wish me a good day - it was almost a bit overwhelming (but completely and totally appreciated)! I even discovered a voicemail (gah, I picked the wrong day to forget to turn on the ringer for my phone!) from the "Baron clan", in which they, along with my friend Val, sang me a rather muddled, off-key and completely wonderful rendition of "Happy Birthday".

In late morning, Kirk pinged me to say that my birthday present had been delivered. It was shipped to my work address, so he suggested I go pick it up. I was pretty sure I knew what it was. Last week, when we were in Berkeley, tokimi had pinged me to say that Apple had just announced an 80 gb ipod. Now, I've been complaining for months that 40 gb simply isn't big enough. I was hoping for a 150 gb the size of a nano. Yes, yes, I know - it's a bit of a pipe dream, but 80 gb is almost enough to fit about 70% of our current music library (yes, I've been collecting CDs since I was in college - Kirk was happy to marry into so much music). So, when I heard an 80 gb was available, I immediately sent the link to Kirk and said "wow! check this out!" He said "cool! I guess it's a good thing I hadn't bought your birthday present yet, huhn?" So...I was pretty sure I knew what I'd be getting. And I did!

Of course, I immediately took it home, opened it up and started loading music on it. It takes a while to load 80 gb! With the OS and software loaded on the ipod, I had 74.37 gb of usable space. I'm using every little bit and byte. Funnily, it's actually slightly smaller in size than my 40 gb, and the screen is bigger. AND in colour! Now I need a new case, as my old one doesn't fit it properly. Since my old ipod is going to Kirk (his old one died), he will inherit my case too, once I get a new case.

The DUB servers wish SportChick a happy birthdayWhile waiting for my 74.37 gb to transfer over, I played some bzflag. Pimpinella had put up a banner on the dub servers wishing me a happy birthday. (It's interesting how I was turning everything from 16 to 90-something, depending upon who was wishing me a good day! In fact, the answer to my age IS the answer.)

In the early afternoon, my doorbell rang. Now, for the last two and a half weeks (it seems longer!), we have had our lives and apartments turned upside down while they repipe the whole building. They are replacing all of our copper piping. There isn't a single room in our small apartment this isn't affected. We've been waiting for several days for them to finish our apartment (they're done with the repipe, but havne't closed up all the walls), so I presumed that the door was just one of the wallboarding guys coming back to finish up. I was shocked to see a man standing at my door with a huge bouquet of beautiful red roses! I happily accepted the delivery and discovered my wonderful husband had sent them to me!

Kirk and Donna celebrateI knew that Kirk was planning something for that evening - presumably including dinner, so I didn't have to cook. He actually arrived home a full hour earlier than I expected, but then said he had to go run an errand and left. He was home about 40 minutes later. He had a cake and a beautiful card for me! But of course, we were going to have dinner first.

Just as I was almost ready to walk out the door, the doorbell rang (again). What now? It was a delivery for me. I opened the huge box to find ANOTHER flower arrangement...I looked at Kirk quizzically and he shook his head. There was a note - my friends Dianne & Jeff had send the flowers! Cool! Kirk put the flowers in water and we headed out.

I love surprises. It's really hard for Kirk to surprise me - I'm very curious and he's a horrible liar (which is a very good thing, but not conducive to being surprised often). But in this case, I had studiously attempted not to ask him anything about what we were doing, and he had done his part by not bringing it up. I knew it couldn't be too far - we could get there within 15 minutes according to him. We drove down to Hermosa Beach, toward my old house. In fact, a block and a half from my old house! There's a beautiful, well-known little Italian restaurant (called The Bottle Inn) down there that, despite having lived right by it for 18 months and still very close for another another 4 years, I had never been. The menu was divine! It was extremely hard to make a decision, but I finally selected the Risotto Al Filetto and Kirk selected the Conchilioni. We had an appetizer of Calamari - possibly the best I've ever had. It was served in a giant martini glass. The atmosphere was both romantic and conducive to good conversation. We were at a table that was suitably secluded and in a quiet enough location to have conversation without straining our voices or our ears.

I thought we would manage to sneak out the door without any "birthday" hoopla, but (when asked if we wanted to order dessert) Kirk mentioned we were heading home to get some birthday cake and of course, they were back moments later with a small dish of chocolate mousse and loud voices.

After dinner, we took a nice walk along the strand in Hermosa Beach. It has been so long since we've done that, and despite my completely unsuitable (and clacky) shoes, we had a very nice time! All-in-all, it was a fantastic day - certainly the best birthday I can remember ever having! Thanks to everyone who made it so special!

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Monday, September 11


Need More Space

For those of you who don't know, I play an online game called ""BzFlag". It is open source (which means free) and multi-platform. In November of last year, I began playing in a couple of the leagues that they have. In order to be more "competitive", I changed up my config, including adding an extra "fire" key (for firing bullets). I mapped my space bar to fire.

My computer, which is almost 2 years old as I write this, is definitely showing wear on the keyboard. Many of the keys, especially ones I use often, no longer have the letter visible. Lucky I am not a "hunt and peck"'er. But I have an additional problem now. Recently, during a particularly tough match, I was firing and noticed something was poking my finger... I had broken my space bar! Somehow, during the "firing" of bullets from my digital tank, I had managed to crack the side of my space bar that I use to fire. Great... :-/ I guess Alienware will be getting some more of my money, soon. In the meantime, a piece of scotch tape is enough to hold the plastic together.

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Saturday, September 9


Three Blonde Mice (Feet)

Ok, today, a guy on irc was talking about the feet on his mouse. Now, of COURSE mice have feet - regardless of whether they are white mice, brown mice, multicoloured mice, or whatever. But I soon came to discover he was talking about his COMPUTER mouse. Feet? Did he REALLY say his mouse had FEET? I couldn't resist and I questioned him about it.

Here's what transpired:

mouseman: hmm, i like this mouse
mouseman: some kind, same model, but it's feet seem better
Me: your mice have feet?!
mouseman: SC: most, if not all, mice have feet
mouseman: doess't yours ?
Me: nope
Me: mine glides, mouseman
mouseman: what part of the mouse touches the mousepad ?
Me: the whole bottom
mouseman: so, the feet wore off ?
mouseman: i thought my mouse had it bad, with no shoes, till I met SC who's mouse had no feet
Me: hehe
* SC has never SEEN a mouse with feet - unless it has fur too
mouseman: THe bottom of my mouse +==>
mouseman: although the orignal feet wore off, i have replaced them with bigger ones
Me: weird
Me: mine HAS no feet
Me: should it?!
mouseman: no, weird is a mouse with no feet :)
mouseman: yes
Me: hrmph
mouseman: what kind of mouse ?
Me: hrm
Me: apparently mine has invisible feet
mouseman: laser mouse !?
mouseman: puh
mouseman: uh huh, and at the bottom of the page
mouseman: do you see the section entitled "Polytetrafluoroethylene gaming feet" ?
mouseman: those are some big feet :)
mouseman: sry, middle of page
mouseman: i think we lost the blond one :)

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Friday, August 11


An Upgrade!

Well, my computer is now almost two years old. Rather than upgrading and buying a whole new machine, we've doubled its memory from 1Gb to 2Gb. Today, Kirk is going to install the new hard drive. My old 60 gb HD is nearly full, so we are putting in a 160. Yippee!!


Tuesday, May 2


Back (finally)

Well, it's been a terribly long time since I posted last. Somehow, I managed to "break" my blog last fall. And of course, it took ages to get around to getting it fixed (thanks to Kirk, who I finally asked to help). I've got much to catch up on, so be patient.


Saturday, August 6



Well, Kirk & I have now started to listen to podcasts. There are a number of them that I enjoy listening to (and they usually have accompanying websites): Tiny Screenfuls with Josh Barnett, Podfinder with Adam Curry, Andy Grace: Talk of Australia, and KCRW's Good Food, among others. I was listening to Good Food the other day and they interviewed Eddie Lin, a blogger who was recently selected to receive an award for his food-oriented writing on Deep End Dining. Quite an interesting fellow.

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Sunday, July 3


Dinner in OC

We just had a wonderful afternoon I Orange County visiting Kirk's parents. After spending some time with his dad in his elder care facility, we had a nice dinner with his mom at El Torito Grill. Then, I got to hear some great stories from when Kirk was a child.

Oh, and by the way, I am making this post from my new Treo 650!

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Thursday, June 30


Posting from my phone

Last week, Kirk and I got new cell phones - Treo 650s, complete with camera! This is a photo of Stormy, who thinks we belong to her!


Saturday, December 25


Surprise surprise!

We managed to surprise Kirk with a party to celebrate his 40th Birthday Guess who got an ipod for Christmas?! This ipod was specially ordered, thanks to our bz friend, Jim (who works for Apple) and came straight to our doorstep from Shanghai!

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Donna in Austria
Click for larger image Austria, August 2003