Friday, March 7, 2014

Safety First

It has been a year since I went to East Van Tuneups and purchased a used mountain bike. My previous mountain bike, which was a really lovely one, died a horrible death when I moved from UBC to Kitsilano well over 10 years ago. And although it was a good bike and I brought it to Vancouver in 2002 I can't say that I rode it all that much. It spent most of the time languishing on the communal bike racks at UBC...which is why someone stole my original seat. I suppose I should be happy that they at least left their crummy seat.

In any event, thanks to Amazing!L's influence, not to mention that of Shaun and Joe!, I started commuting around Vancouver by bike. Not all the time, sometimes a friend is driving so I can carpool with them. But for the most part where I used to walk or take the bus, I now ride my bike. Amazing!L and I even spent last Thanksgiving on a bike trip from Nanaimo to Victoria -- taking it easy on me and only riding about 50 - 60km a day.

Because this is Vancouver, the fall/spring attire of choice is rain boots and foul weather gear. My rain boots are a Costco special – only $20! – and certainly keep my feet dry though without the best treads to be found. Slick surfaces are consequently treacherous and the main foyer of my office is a prime candidate for disaster. Every day I walk to the elevators of my fancy building in my helmet because I figure if I go down on the slate or tiles, at least my head will be safe. I know I must look like a dork or that I'm trying too hard to be "biker chic" but the sad truth is that I'm really just a klutz. But I'm a klutz with a reduced carbon footprint! Huzzah!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Office 2010 - Excel formatting: brackets do not appear for negative figures

Okay, so this has nothing to do with anything creative but a lot to do with creative frustration! When I got my Windows 7 machine with Office 2010, I noticed that my worksheets no longer formatted negative numbers in brackets with the "accounting" setting. Instead, the only option I was given was a dash and black text or a dash and red text. I personally find it very easy to overlook a dash when scanning a page and red text just means that it costs 8 - 10 times more to print that document because you have one red number. Boo.

So aside from the many people whose only answer was to custom format the sheet cell by cell to give me the brackets I desired, Bernard from Nova Scotia solved my frustrations. It's not a setting local to the Office software, but the whole computer! (Go figure.)

If you too are having this problem, follow these steps:
Go to your start menu (bottom left of your main task bar)
Select Control Panel
Select Region and Languages
Under Formats tab, select additional settings
Under BOTH the numbers and currency tabs, change the negative number format to a bracket
Select apply then ok until you are out of the window
Close whatever Office document you want to format
Reopen the document and format the cells to "Accounting"
Presto! You have your brackets back.

An accounting world sends its silent thank you's into the atmosphere.

Here's the linky link:
Microsoft Forum

Microsoft Excel Office 2010 Windows 7 accounting formatting negative numbers brackets dashes settings