Howard Wolowitz from the Big Bang Theory
Howard Wolowitz from Big Bang Theory

If you’ve ever watched The Big Bang Theory, you’re familiar with a character named Howard Wolowitz. You may not know that he was named after an actual person who the show’s creator knew and who I once worked for.

My first job was at a place called The Small Computer Company, best known for creating the Profile database for Radio Shack’s TRS-80. My job was to port it to different systems, first to CP/M on the Apple II with a Z-80 card, and later porting the Tandy Model 16 version to various Unix systems.

The company was founded by Bill…

Interviwing at Amazon was one of the worst experiences I've ever had. Last year one of their recruiters contacted me about a position I really had no interest in and wasn't qualified for. He finally convinced me to apply for it and I got an interview.

Their remote interview was 8 hours spread over two days. I have no management experience and no interest in management, but a big part of the interview was about managing a team.

I knew that I wasn't getting the job in the second hour on the first day, but we kept at it and…

Today marks two weeks since my second Pfizer shot, which means I’m supposed to be fully protected. However, I don’t feel like celebrating. Instead I feel an intense sadness.

I’m not very social, so I actually liked the isolation of the last year. I was relieved that I didn’t have to deal with people and I feel uncomfortable returning to society. I still have no desire to eat in a restaurant or go to a bar and I still don’t feel comfortable taking my mask off and I feel uncomfortable around people who aren’t wearing masks.

The only things I…

Since my days have been fairly uneventful, instead of a daily log, I’ll only be posting highlights and observations from now on.


Today is Henri’s birthday. I gave him a few new toys but Desi grabbed them right away. He didn’t seem to mind.

Zazie reopened for takeout, with a few Cinco de Mayo specials including tacos and huevos rancheros.

I don’t care much for Cinco de Mayo because it seems to be an excuse to drink lots of tequila and get drunk. I can’t stand tequila or any agave based drinks. …

Monday, Apr. 27

As expected, the shelter in place order was extended through the end of May.

I finally got my unemployment payment, and I took another coding challenge today.

Tuesday, Apr. 28 — Wednesday, Apr. 29

The days have been pretty uneventful. I’ve been trying to go for a walk around the neighborhood to get some exercise every day.

I spoke to someone who told me their office will remain closed until September.

Thursday, Apr. 30

This morning I went to the grocery store and found that it wasn’t too crowded and it was well stocked with most items.

Monday, Apr. 20

I can’t believe we’re on week 6.

It’s very quiet here for 4/20. The streets are nearly deserted with fewer people than I’ve seen the last few days, but lots of helicopters buzzing around.

Tuesday, Apr. 21

The ending of The Plot Against America really hit me hard. The series was excellent, but it felt very close to our current reality.

I read one of the Prince retrospectives and I’m mourning him all over again and missing him, 3 years after he died.

I find that I get very emotional over lots of things, like hearing certain…

Monday. Apr. 13

I had to pick up a few things at the grocery store this morning, so I went out a little before 10 AM. It was pretty empty, but they didn’t have much on the shelves. It looks like Monday isn’t a good day to go.

I really miss going to the botanical garden. It’ll be one of the first places I go when it reopens. I also miss going downtown, visiting Chinatown, North Beach, and the waterfront. I even miss riding the subway.

I watched a few of the N Judah busses pass and they were pretty…

Monday, Apr. 6

I’ve lost track of days & weeks.

I have my cat facts app working. I’m now polishing it and getting ready to submit to the app store.

It rained most of the day, but I went out for a few errands. My cats had nothing to eat, so I went to the pet shop, which was open after being closed for inventory for several days. They now make you put on gloves before you enter the store.

Tuesday, Apr. 7

I went out to the grocery store in the morning. They were pretty well stocked. …

Monday, Mar. 30

The shelter in place order has been extended at least through the end of April. Muni Metro subway service has been suspended indefinitely, with busses substituting for light rail. It’s strange not seeing the N Judah train running on my street.

I’m supporting my neighborhood restaurants that remain open by ordering takeout a few times a week and leaving them a larger than usual tip.

I had to get out and get some exercise, so I took a walk up to Haight Street. The street was pretty empty and lots of stores are boarded up.

Almost every…

Mike Cohen

iOS developer, theater geek, history nerd. Former Bionic Panda. I love San Francisco.

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