Done this week (20170716Su - 22Sa)

Jul. 23rd, 2017 10:12 pm
mdlbear: the positively imaginary half of a cubic mandelbrot set (Default)
[personal profile] mdlbear

It's been a stressful week. The worst thing to happen, of course, was Jordin Kare's death on Wednesday. Friday we went down to Seattle both to check on the apartment, and to look for a kitten at Cat City. There were some wonderful ones, but they were all on hold. We went on a wild cat chase up to Lynnwood, only to find that the kitten we'd wanted to meet had been adopted while we were on the road.

The second pod was unloaded yesterday, mostly using hired muscle. It filled an appalling amount of space in the garage (I set up the plastic shelves down the center, and there are piles (mostly of book boxes) next to it. So there's that.) I had a bit of a meltdown this morning upacking mostly kitchen stuff, including the Peter Rabbit plate that I'd had as a kid, and realizing that we didn't have nearly enough room for even the reduced amount of stuff we brought, and concerned about money, and, and, and,... The usual stuff that happens when the brain weasels go out to play with the black dog.

We currently have two boxes of stuff to give away, one for my daughter who has just gotten engaged, and a largeish pile for G.

However, despite the stress, our first full week here has mostly been pretty good. Colleen's new caregiver, G", is working out quite well. (Glenn is G; our previous housekeeper, Giselle, was G'. This one is named Gina, so, ... After her I'm switching to subscripts.) Molly, our Chevy Bolt, is finally getting fully charged every day or two. (I am somewhat amused by the fact that she sends me a text when she's done charging. Molly is not amused by being mistaken for a wallboard anchor.)

Our beds are here, but we're waiting until after the new floor is in (Tuesday) to set them up, since moving them would involve taking them apart and setting them up again -- not worth it.

Our cats are at least not fighting; we're still keeping them separate until we can (hopefully) re-introduce them. We've bought a couple of Feliway pheromone diffusers - one for the main area of the house, and one for the room we plan to use for the re-introduction.

I have also replaced the ionization fire detector nearest the kitchen with a photoelectric one. Ionization detectors are sensitive to open flames, and we have a gas stove. Bad combination.

Notes & links, as usual )

Notice about filkarchive

Jul. 24th, 2017 06:49 am
kjn: (Default)
[personal profile] kjn posting in [community profile] filk
This was posted by [personal profile] hms42 over on Facebook:

For those who still look at Livejournal (I know most people are not on there any longer), the filk archive LJ account has been hacked a couple of times over the past few days and they are posting in Russian on there.

Its going to get migrated over to Dreamwidth for the history to be preserved before the account is closed.

The site itself is currently down for reprogramming and will eventually be put back online.


The LJ account has since been cleaned up and migrated to [personal profile] filkarchive here on Dreamwidth.

Moving the Pile

Jul. 23rd, 2017 02:59 pm
billroper: (Default)
[personal profile] billroper
There is no softball today, nor baseball, nor parties -- other than the end-of-season pool party for the softball league this evening -- so it is time to start moving the pile of things that need to be done. So far today, I have:

  • Bought memberships for Musecon
  • Reserved hotel rooms for OVFF and Windycon
  • Gone to Sam's Club to pick up staples and things for dinner
  • Started three loads of shirts
  • Updated the video drivers on the studio computer
  • Put the broken banister back up on the basement stairs
  • Thrown the ball for Ruby

    As far as that last, well, you have to have priorities or nothing gets done. :)
  • (no subject)

    Jul. 22nd, 2017 10:10 pm
    yam: (Nap guitar)
    [personal profile] yam
    It is I, sleeping yam!

    Sooooo sleepy all the time. I barely do anything and then am so exhausted by it. Feeling pretty down about that, but oh well, it is what it is. I was hoping maybe it is just allergies on top of everything, but I'm not usually allergic to everything forever, and I haven't been getting less sleepy. On the other hand, it seems to be a truly epic year for allergies across the board, judging by how hard it is to keep my antihistamine section stocked at work, so maybe that is it. I'm like, pregnancy-level sleepy, although thank god that is not the cause. (I love my baby and I am never doing that again.) Feeling down about my finances as a tangled-up part of this; I keep trying to pick up extra shifts - in fact I have one this very week, I have absolutely not learned - and then getting smacked down immediately by how weak I am for days afterward. Sigh. I did a big round of expense trimming and feel a bit better about things, but my travel budget is not very... er... existent. Things will improve a bit next year I think, when my tax returns catch up to reality and I qualify for more government this and that. And I'm going to sign up for the Please Pay For My Mental Health Medication I Am Broke But You Want Me To Take It Trust Me program, which will incidentally pay for my expensive migraine pills, since they are also used for various psychiatric issues. Nothing's all that bad, but a lot of things are not great and getting my pollyanna on is something I have less and less energy for. Thank god I have cats.

    I am, no surprise, still loving having cats again. It's not exactly the unconditional love of an animal that appeals - it's super conditional, I totally feed them and they love that! - plus I feel lots of unconditional love from my family and friends, I am blessed. But I never have to explain or do emotional labour about my migraines to them. It's... it's amazing. I spend a lot of exhausted time trying to hide how much pain I am in, or trying to wade ahead through awkward answers to "How are your migraines?" "How are you?" "You're doing so much better!" etc, or trying to soothe people who have gotten a peek at what exactly I'm used to - being in pain 24/7, expecting to be in pain, being glad when the pain is not as bad as it sometimes is, stopping for meds every 4 hours - that stuff keeps me busy and I don't really want to spend more time going "No, no, it's okay, I've got this. I mean, I recognize that it's awful that I've got this, that there's a thing to get, just... let's talk about the weather, hey?" And yet I have the same impulses when people I love are in pain or in a lingering bad situation and I get the helpless need to reach out and show my shared horror / sympathy / disapproval etc. I'm not sure what to do with the irritation at how much emotional labour it is. Trying to come to view it as a symptom of my illness rather than a behaviour other people are doing to me. In some ways the societal downplaying of how bad migraine can be because it's predominantly a woman's disease comes in handy, helps me get away with "Fine thanks how are you!" when light is hurting me and sound is hurting me and my head is throbbing and moving hurts. It's... complicated. I've settled on usually answering "Oh, medium." when people ask how I'm doing. Most people seem to interpret that as "not in the mood to talk about it, but not brushing you off," which is about what I want I guess. Sick of this shit; still no hall pass; oh well, heft the backpack, here we go. But cats. Cats are an outlet of affection and amusement that involves none of this social illness role math. It's nice.

    Splatoon 2 just came out and I ADORE IT. (Splatoon 2 had a line item all by itself in my cramped little budget. Tentacles: essential.) I can't stand to play for more than a few matches in a row because the sound hurts and also like, staying awake is harrrrrd, but BEING A SQUID IS STILL GREAT. Greg is very excited to watch me play. He would also like to play, but he's not getting his hands on my expensive, fragile Switch until he can come up with the gameboy I just bought him like six months ago which is lost inside our apartment somehow. This is not as ridiculous as it sounds, as our floors are constantly a disaster - he's six and I can't easily bend over to pick things up because of my bad knee and the way my head hurts if I do - so probably there are LOTS of interesting treasures hidden in the drifts of clutter here. But no getting jam on my new console until I confirm the previous one hasn't been stepped on or something. I might cave and let him play Splatoon 1 on the wii u, since let's face it, it's already well-jellied.

    I've been going to church lately. I feel all sheepish about it, after being various flavours of atheist all these years. (While also being a church-going unitarian for many of them - but that's different in a lot of important ways.) But the Wednesday healing service at the local anglican cathedral is so lovely. It's so CALM and quiet and soothing, and they pet my head with blessed oil, and all kinds of muscles in my head and neck untense as the liturgy flows past. And then church ladies make me coffee and gossip about nursing homes with me. (As a pharmacist I am totally up on all the nursing home gossip.)

    I have recently devoured two Neal Stephenson books and loved them: Reamde and Seveneves. They are both very in your face speed-reads (despite their great weight) rather than dense fruitcake like the Baroque Cycle, I am happy to report. I mean, I read all of the baroque cycle (I alternated it a chapter at a time with Vorkosigan books to keep myself going,) but it's more the kind of thing you do to put on your resume rather than for pleasure. I'm a little afraid to pick up his newest, DODO, because it looks like a bit of a return to historical twee-ness. I might give it a few years and then peep nervously at reviews.

    Righto, back to sleep. Here are your journal entries for the next three weeks: CATS CATS CATS CATS CATS CATS CATS CATS CATS

    Well, At Least It Was a Good Game

    Jul. 22nd, 2017 10:44 pm
    billroper: (Default)
    [personal profile] billroper
    Softball being over for a while, I ventured down to Wrigley Field to see today's Cubs / Cardinals game. Normally, I would go to the Sunday night game instead, but the softball league's family swim party is tomorrow night. (Hmm. Ok, softball not quite over yet. :) ) It was a good game, but sadly, the Cardinals lost as the manager left Wainwright in just a little too long, followed by yet another bullpen meltdown.

    Ah, well. It's not like I have very high hopes for the Cards at this point, but you never know what will happen.

    Activity, and the lack therof...

    Jul. 22nd, 2017 02:38 pm
    hrrunka: Frowning face from a character sheet by Keihound (good idea)
    [personal profile] hrrunka
    Wednesday evening's radio club committee meeting was about as interesting as you might expect, but at least it didn't last as long as usual. I was home very shortly after 10pm, and got an early night.

    I was awake quite early on Thursday. The morning's Morse practice went a lot better than it's gone in quite a while. Only one word caused me trouble. However, after it was over, much of the rest of the day was a bit of a struggle, energy-wise. A bit of stuff got done, but much less than might have been.

    I spent a little more time tidying on Friday, but again ran short of energy and motivation before I got very far. It's still at the "things get messier before they get tidier" stage.

    In the evening, however, there was gaming. At young A's request we played 7 Wonders, and Phil won. It was a short enough game that I was home before 10:30pm.

    It rained overnight, and it has also been raining randomly and heavily at intervals all day. I have done a bit more tidying. I've also spent a bit of time trying to catch SOTA activators on the radio, Radio conditions ruminations )

    Edit 7 hours later: Well, quite a bit of stuff has found itself a home in the workshop or the boiler cupboard, and there's a lot less on the floor now. There's further to go, but much less far than there was this morning.

    Tomorrow there's an NMC rehearsal.

    Short Windycon Meeting

    Jul. 21st, 2017 11:19 pm
    billroper: (Default)
    [personal profile] billroper
    It was a short Windycon meeting tonight, which given that it's still July, was probably a good thing.

    Next meeting is going to be a good bit more busy. :)

    Back In the Swim

    Jul. 20th, 2017 11:31 pm
    billroper: (Default)
    [personal profile] billroper
    I finally made it back to the pool with the rest of the family today after work, although I left home later than they did. Katie and Julie were interested in playing a variety of competitive racing games to retrieve thrown objects; Gretchen and I eventually convinced them to do something less competitive in the interest of sibling peace. :)

    R.I.P Jordin Kare

    Jul. 20th, 2017 09:58 am
    mdlbear: (rose)
    [personal profile] mdlbear

    Jordin Kare died yesterday, from complications of aortic valve replacement surgery. I am still somewhat in shock. He was younger than Colleen.

    There is not much to be grateful for on this Thursday, but I am profoundly grateful for Jordin's music, which has been part of my life's soundtrack since at least the early 1980s. He was one of the founders of Off Centaur Publications, publishers of the Westerfilk songbooks and many fine filk tapes. (Jordin did the typesetting for Westerfilk I using troff, which led to a number of typos involving single quotes, which troff treats specially if they're the first character in a line.)

    Last night Naomi and I sang a few of his songs -- "Fire In the Sky", "The Designer" and "The Engineer", "Waverider", and all I could remember of "Kantrowitz 1972". It wasn't until this morning that I found the lyrics for that and "Sail for Amber", Colleen's favorite.

    I just ...

    (Jordin Kare: Fire In The Sky (1991) | LyricWikia)

    RIP Jordin Kare

    Jul. 20th, 2017 05:43 am
    madfilkentist: Photo of Carl (Default)
    [personal profile] madfilkentist posting in [community profile] filk
    Very sad news. Jordin Kare has died, his widow Mary Kay informs us on Twitter.


    Tired

    Jul. 19th, 2017 11:52 pm
    billroper: (Default)
    [personal profile] billroper
    Well, at least there's no scheduled phone call for work tonight. Maybe I should go to bed. :)

    Practice

    Jul. 19th, 2017 09:36 pm
    catsittingstill: (Default)
    [personal profile] catsittingstill
    So this is a thing I did a couple of nights ago. Call it practice. Practice just being there. Practice being the Middle Aged White Woman policemen want to look reasonable in front of. It was surprisingly difficult for something that isn't difficult at all.

    Here's how it happened; I went out for a walk around dusk, because I hadn't gotten any exercise that day, and I tromped around campus for a while playing Pokémon Go and about the fourth time the app crashed on me I decided I'd had enough exercise and started walking home. By now it was full dark, maybe 10 pm or 10:15.

    I was tromping down the street full tilt in my usual "take no prisoners" pace, when I noticed a couple of police cars by the back dock of the Post Office, with their flashing blue lights on. As I came by I saw a white car pulled over in the glare of their headlights being searched by a policeman while a pair of young people sat stiffly on the nose of the police car with another policeman talking to them.

    I would ordinarily have passed by, politely pretending not to notice these stressed people. But these are not ordinary times and I've been hearing things, and I started weighing things over in my head. The girl was white, very blond--the boy was wearing a red watch cap and I couldn't see enough of him to be sure of his color. A couple of my friends had mentioned the Power Of The Middle-Aged White Woman to keep cops from getting violent. Should I stay?

    Could the police men even see me in the dark? I was wearing a white shirt; surely they could. Wait, now the boy turned his head and I could see he was white too. Maybe they didn't need me. Probably they didn't. I should go.

    But I could feel the urge to turn around and leave, especially when the policemen kept glancing my way. Like a social repulsor field. And I thought: maybe I should stay just for the practice. Practice Being There. So I stayed.

    The policemen glanced at me again. I reminded myself I had every right to be there, and to watch policemen doing interesting things on public property. I stayed. One of the policemen drove away. Mosquitoes came and expressed their pleasure that I had been so accommodating as to wear shorts. I asked myself what Judi would do. I stayed. A new policeman drove up and talked to the kids a while.

    Then he walked over to me saying "May I help you?" Jimminy Christmas he was actually taller than me which doesn't happen very often.

    I smiled and said "No thanks, I'm just watching."

    He said "that's fine, you have every right to watch." (Ha. White Woman Privilege at work.) "I just wondered if you knew these juveniles."

    I smiled and shook my head and said "Sorry, no."

    He walked back over to the kids. My feet got tired and I leaned against a nearby stone wall. More talking. I wondered if there might be ticks in the lawn the stone wall was retaining. I hoped not. Presently he led the girl over to his police car. I moved a bit so I could see that he wasn't hurting her. She got in the back of his car. He drove her away. I sat back down on the stone wall.

    After a while the boy was allowed to go sit in the driver's seat of his car. He smoked a cigarette. I stayed. And a while after that the remaining policeman got in his car, pulled out and drove away, and the boy did likewise and I went home.

    I stayed for roughly an hour and came home with tired feet and new mosquito bites, and had Kip check me for ticks before I went to bed. (No ticks, whew; ticks really give me the creeps.) It was not an easy thing to resist the social repulsion field and all the voices in my own head telling me everything was fine and I didn't have to be there and I was probably embarrassing those kids or the policemen or both, and for nothing. But it was a lot easier for me than it would have been for someone who didn't have my advantages. And hopefully next time it will be easier still.

    Because there will be a next time. I'm practicing.

    Caturday, with lots of kittens

    Jul. 19th, 2017 02:45 pm
    madfilkentist: The Catmobile at Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society (Catmobile)
    [personal profile] madfilkentist
    Lots of kittens in the Kitten Room today! Four black ones and a tabby with white! Two of the black kittens, Fox and Jag, were playing like crazy, and batting at me as I was trying to fill out the form on their cage.

    Freud

    Sunshine was allowed out of her cage and wanted to get out of the room as well. A new cat is named Freud (above), and he is indeed a joy. He was very friendly with both Virginia and me.

    Cat cushion

    Ce n'est pas un chat. I kept looking at that cushion and thinking it was a sleeping cat, or maybe a tribble.

    Two weeks ago, I talked to Virginia about getting scratched by cats, and Ladyslipper immediately scratched her. Last week I said I hadn't been scratched myself yet at the shelter, and this week Ladyslipper put an end to that record as I was cleaning a shelf next to her. I'd better be careful not to give her any more ideas.

    Joni Mitchell was adopted. I hope her temperament is better in a home where she isn't surrounded by lots of other cats in close quarters.

    Tweets, Bubbles and Bleeps

    Jul. 19th, 2017 03:29 pm
    hrrunka: A small radio transceiver (morse)
    [personal profile] hrrunka
    I tackled the waterlilies in the pond on Monday morning before my morning shower. What I really need to do, but will have to leave 'til they've died back for the winter, is to reduce the root-stock by about 80%, and fix the remaining root-stock to something seriously heavy. Trouble is, by the time the season's good for doing that to the plant, it's also a whole lot colder, and paddling in the pond when the temperature's in single digits isn't that much fun...

    I was distracted for quite a bit of the rest of the day by the astronomical society committee's ideas for adding social media links to the society's website. I compromised by experimenting a bit with Twitter, which might do enough to distract some of the committee, but not, I fear, the ones wedded to Facebook.

    On Tuesday I was a bit distracted by Ingress, which took almost 48 hours to increment my "Max Time Portal Held" stat from 149 to 150 days. I'd figured the counter should have rolled over some time on Monday morning. By Tuesday afternoon I was wondering whether the portal it was referring to was not the one I thought it was referring to, and that the mystery other portal had been taken down some time Monday morning without my noticing or being alerted. It turned out that Ingress just has a very flexible definition of "day".

    On Tuesday evening there was a talk about Morse Code at the nearer of the two radio clubs I attend regularly. The meeting was well-attended, and folk seemed to enjoy it. As the talk was aimed more at those who've never used Morse, I found most of the actual Morse a bit slow, but maybe it will spark some interest.

    There was a bit of a thunderstorm overnight. I didn't properly wake up for it, but I was aware enough of it going on that I didn't sleep all that well, either. I've been feeling the effects all day. This evening there's a committee meeting for the other radio club, so I expect I'll end up having an afternoon nap before that.

    ot: SFF Binge-Reader Bundle

    Jul. 19th, 2017 10:22 am
    filkferengi: filk fandom--all our life's a circle (Default)
    [personal profile] filkferengi posting in [community profile] filk
    https://storybundle.com/bundle

    Just a couple of these things, & it pays for itself. For example, the Fiction River anthology alone [nearly 800 pages!] is 8.00 on Kindle. The Uncollected Anthology Year One [490 pages] is only available as a $24 paperback. Afaik, this is the only e-book edition. The Grayson trilogy is excellent, romance-with-woo-woo fun; the Rusch Diving series has great buzz. The Faerie Summer is a 20-book e-book set.

    Throw in the others, & that's a lot at an excellent deal. Squee!

    filkferengi, off to buy it now

    Timing Is Everything

    Jul. 18th, 2017 11:55 pm
    billroper: (Default)
    [personal profile] billroper
    Oh, look! My midnight phone meeting has just been pushed to 12:30 AM. I think I am going to try to beg off of this...

    A Hugo recommendation for next year

    Jul. 18th, 2017 05:29 pm
    filkerdave: (science fiction)
    [personal profile] filkerdave

    The truly wonderful What Football Will be Like in 17776 has finished so now's a great time to sit down and read it.

    It's a lovely little SF piece. Be warned that you'll need to watch videos and animations as well as reading text. It's worth it, though.

    Moss-Free

    Jul. 17th, 2017 10:56 pm
    billroper: (Default)
    [personal profile] billroper
    We are now through four chapters of Heinlein's The Rolling Stones. Katie is finding it greatly amusing, although she is occasionally annoyed at Heinlein "picking on" things like automobiles.

    I am waiting until she finds out about the flat cats. :)
    filkerdave: Made by LJ user fasterpussycat (Default)
    [personal profile] filkerdave

    It turns out that there's no Music AH for Worldcon 75.

    I mean, on one level, I'm not shedding any tears over screwups with the convention after they booted me (and the way it was done). But on the other hand, my friends are going to miss out on a lot of the activity they enjoy at the convention because there's nobody put it together.

    Complicated feelings.
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