Having nothing better to do, and being tired of staring at the walls, today I decided to move some funds around and go for a drive…
The route was simple; I-225 north to I-70, then west to Golden.
I spent a lot of weekends at my grandmother’s place in Golden growing up, and part of my 11th grade year as well. And I’ve not been back there in probably two decades – so, why not go sightsee? And from there I’d just randomly make my way back across Denver to home…
The drive would have been nice if it weren’t for all the people. See, I don’t recreationally leave the house unless it’s to head away from civilization – so I don’t get to experience the anthill that Denver has become very often.
Today’s route took me right through Denver on I-70, so I got to see all of the homeless camps everywhere, the perpetual traffic jam on the highways through town, and the general shitshow that is the average metropolis in the 2020’s.
In case it’s not clear, I wasn’t impressed.
Once I got to the west side of Denver though, traffic lightened up and I hit almost 60 mpg as I entered Golden on highway 58. I took the back way to the old house through the subdivision that was springing up at the base of north Table Mesa in ’86; most of the mountainside is now houses of course.
The old house on East street is kind of a dump now and the current owner doesn’t seem to care too much about it. And they were in the garage with the door up, so I felt it would be creepy to stop and take a picture…
I drove from there down the route I would take to school; Ford street to Jackson street to Golden High School.
Golden high School apparently got a remodel some time in the past as it’s no longer the run-down 1950’s campus mess it was when I went there. It’s quite a ways back from the street now, and it actually looks pretty nice. And the parking lot is a lot bigger, so the students don’t need to park on all the streets around the school.
I then followed south Golden road down to 6th ave.
Over the years they’ve added a half dozen roundabouts along south Golden rd, which kind of complicates things that didn’t need to be complicated – but such is the way things go. The car dealership where I got my first car is still there though, as is the McDonalds I used to get lunch at a couple times a week.
As I crossed Colfax I briefly thought about taking it east, back to the Aurora side of Denver, but given how bad the traffic was on I-70 to get to Golden I figured attempting the reverse on surface streets was a really bad idea.
So I took 6th ave east to I-25, past Red Rocks Community College where I took AP data entry and computer science back in 1986…
After I’d aced the placement test, I got to ride a bus over there every other morning to work on professional grade hardware.
It also got me a login for the terminal system they were using for the data entry portion of the class, which I quickly discovered had levels of access…
To make a long story short, this was my first legit “system hack”. I gave myself supervisor privileges on the school’s S/36 by way of finding an overflow in the classroom application’s user menus that caused the session to drop to an unprotected command line…
This led to my getting a talking to from a system administrator… But it was more of a head-pat because he was impressed that I had figured out the S/36 on the fly with no manual or instruction. And this ended with me getting to spend time on the actual mainframe instead of doing data entry – as long as I promised to lay off the hacking.
I did a lot of tape loading, but I also got to write and run some of my own code on the IBM 308X that lived in a pressurized airlocked elevated floor cleanroom. It was basically about as high-tech as it got, and I had access.
I headed east on 6th ave and got off on I-25 south, and slogged my way to south Colorado Blvd.
Heading a ways south on south Colorado Blvd. lead me to Action Computers; a place I worked at in 1995. I decided being as I was there I should at least stop in, say hi, and have a look around…
Unfortunately, early Friday someone had backed up to the front doors, wrapped a tow chain around the handles, and pulled out most of the front of the store… They then cleaned out a good portion of the inventory.
So the front of the place is boarded up and there’s not a lot in the store – and neither Mark nor Allen were there to say hi to. So I nosed around a few laptops before heading out and making my way back home.
Home was a bit further south on south Colorado Blvd, east on east Hampden Ave., south on I-25, north on I-225, and then south on Parker rd.
I stopped at the local McDonalds and got a quarter pounder with cheese and some fries, and ate them in the car as a bit of a wayback moment.
All in all I burned probably $8 in gas and spent $12 on lunch… $20 well spent I guess.
Listening to "Inhale" by New Arcades