Life after concert

Apr. 30th, 2017 04:31 pm
17catherines: Amor Vincit Omnia (Default)
[personal profile] 17catherines
It does exist, though I have to say, I was so euphoric for days after that I couldn't sleep - while also being vaguely cold-y – which made going back to work on Friday a little interesting.  I wound up crashing at 8:30pm on Friday night and sleeping through til nearly 11 on Saturday.  It helped.  If only I now had a week of holiday to get things done, I'd be golden.  Alas...

(I'm still intermittently euphoric when I think about that duet, though...)

Friday was a bit of a sad day at work - the last day for a very good friend of mine, who I've known since high school, and have worked with in one way or another for about 8 years, as well as job sharing with her way back in the MadProfessor days.  She's moving to New Zealand on Monday, which is a bit of a shock - I wish I'd known earlier.  I'm going to miss her heaps.

And of course, my Centenary Sidekick Postdoc had her last day, too.  She is off to Germany to do her postdoc, with a very prestigious fellowship at a very impressive Institute, and it's great for her, but I'll miss her a lot – she's a one of those people who can always be counted on to volunteer and help with things, she is extremely competent and organised, and of course an excellent scientist.  And also someone who for some reason I am *always* completely awkward with in person.  I have no idea why, since we get on very well, and have a lot of mutual liking and respect for each other we just have trouble actually conversing.  I am the Queen of Social Awkwardness sometimes.

Today was meant to be a choir Sunday, but everyone in the choir was sick, so it was cancelled.  Orgelcub contacted me yesterday to let me know, and I suggested we sing something anyway - people were expecting music this week, and also, it was supposed to be the last Sunday before our minister, A (whom I like and admire very much), goes on extended sick leave while he has a stem cell transplant for his cancer.  I thought it would be nice to give him a good send-off. 

Unfortunately, A actually didn't make it today - he collapsed on Thursday and had to go to hospital early, which is very worrying news.  He had, however, written his sermon and organised the service, which he was apparently very determined to go through with, possibly as late as yesterday, so our supply minister wound up reading A's sermon and going with his hymn choices and liturgy.  Which was sweet and appropriate, given A's commitment.

It also made me laugh a little, because A had chosen 'This Joyful Eastertide' as his final hymn, and I remember him telling me last year that he had gotten in a lot of trouble by making that a congregational hymn just after Easter, because it goes up to an F, and congregations don't generally like singing above a D if they can help it.  He had a lot of complaints, apparently.

I have no proof of this, but knowing A's sense of humour, I would not be one bit surprised if he deliberately put it into his last service because he likes it and because he knows that nobody is going to complain about hymn choices to the minister who is about to go to hospital for extended cancer treatments...

Well played, A.  Well played.

I'm really hoping the stem cell treatment will give him a nice long remission - he's a lovely person and an excellent theologian, and we are very lucky to have him.

(I did sing, by the way - He Shall Feed His Flock, from Handel's Messiah.  We figured we could pull that together without rehearsal, and there is almost no time of year when it is not thematically appropriate.  To my amusement, I got more positive comments from the congregation on this unrehearsed aria than I ever have on the ones I put hours of work into.  But then, this one is in English, and the tune is well-known, and I think that adds a level of comfort which is particularly appropriate for the congregation just now...)

In non-singing news, I lost all of yesterday to reading a completely adorable Enjolras and Grantaire in high school Les Misérables fic, called World Ain't Ready.  It was utterly sweet, and very funny, and I think very much in character, at least at first. I think by the end of the book, the author's Enjolras and Grantaire had become more their own people than Hugo's, but that's OK.  I may have to try google-stalking this author and see if she has managed to publish anything, because I think I want to read it.

I've read a few good bits of fantasy recently. 

Guns of the Dawn )
The Rook )

Finally speaking of reading and writing, I have another of my RITA reviews up at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.  I liked this one more than the previous one I reviewed.  I still need to review my fourth book, which I actually really liked, and am for some reason finding trickier to review as a result.

That will do for now, I think!

on gaslighting

Apr. 27th, 2017 09:25 pm
kengr: (I'm one of them)
[personal profile] kengr
(this is an edited version of a comment I made on one of Fayanora's posts a few years back. Figured it deserved wider distribution:

"There’s a form of mental torture called “gaslighting,” its name taken from a play in which a man..."

Abuse survivors deal with this a lot, and even more so when they are still being abused.

It's due to a major disconnect most folks have.

They (wrongly) believe that *intent* matters. So if it wasn't intended as abuse, it's not actually abusive.

But in reality, intent *doesn't* matter. You can do something with the best of intentions and still hurt someone if they are wired that way.

A good example is allergies. I don't care *how* much care and love you put into that dish of X. If I'm allergic to something in it, you'll put me in the hospital (or the morgue) by making me eat it.

Same thing applies to abusive behavior. Even the racial stuff and GLBT stuff.

But people will fight bitterly to avoid acknowledging this. Because if they do, it means they have to accept several things that they don't want to.

That good intentions don't matter. That other people are not like them, and thus don't react like they do. And worst of all, that being different that way is *not* wrong.

And that last is why so many reactions to getting called on stuff boil down to "you're doing this just to be contrary" (because they *literally* can't conceive of someone actually being/thinking "that" way)

I blame the golden rule for a lot of this. It *inherently assumes* that other people are just like you. The allergy example I used above points out the problems with that.

And gee, ever notice how many people don't *really* believe that allergies exist, they think that they are just people being unreasonably "picky".

Funny how that looks like the folks who claim that they aren't being insensitive/abusive.

The version of the "golden rule" used in metalaw works better but people really hate it:

Do unto others as they would have you do unto them.

People immediately jump to "but they can abuse that for all sorts of things". Which says a lot about how they think...

Thankful Thursday

Apr. 27th, 2017 08:15 pm
mdlbear: Wild turkey hen close-up (turkey)
[personal profile] mdlbear

Without much ado about nothing,

  • Selling our old house. The deal hasn't closed yet, but it seems unlikely that there will be any problems now that the inspection period has ended.
  • Getting closer to buying our new house on Whidbey Island. We could still turn up something fatal during our due diligence period, but we have decided to stay with Whidbey in any case.
  • A mortgage close to getting approved.
  • Enough income, even in retirement, to get a mortgage.
  • Good friends close by our new house.
  • Retirement. To be honest, I am not entirely thankful for this; I will greatly miss being surrounded by brilliant people. Ask me next week.
  • My family of choice. In which I include not only my sister of choice but my darling wife. Both of these amazing women have chosen to live with me. I'm not entirely sure why, but I'm going to shut up and enjoy the ride.

Today, I revisit...

Apr. 27th, 2017 07:48 pm
seawasp: (Default)
[personal profile] seawasp
... a prior review of Nero Wolfe because there were things I hadn't touched on before! 

Code push scheduled for Sunday night

Apr. 27th, 2017 03:03 pm
karzilla: a green fist above the word SMASH! (Default)
[staff profile] karzilla posting in [site community profile] dw_maintenance
We are planning to do a code push late this weekend, at approximately 8pm PDT / 11pm EDT / 3am UTC on Sunday, Apr 30 (or May 1 for you transatlantic types.).

I don't have a list of changes for you yet, but most will fall into the following categories: things users have complained about to support volunteers, things support volunteers have complained about to developers, things [staff profile] denise has complained about not working the way she expects them to (and as we all know, The Boss is Always Right), and things that were printing warnings over and over in the production server logs, making it hard to spot when less frequent, more urgent errors were being printed. Oh, and also all the unused code I ripped out at the roots, which if you notice that, I did it wrong.

To sum up: we are rolling out a bunch of requested changes, so thank you all for your feedback!

If you're new to Dreamwidth and interested in tracking our development process, our commit logs are published to [site community profile] changelog and [community profile] changelog_digest, and every month or so, one of our volunteers will translate those often-cryptic entries into witty, informative code tours! The most recent one was published on April 1, so we're about due for a new one. Hint, hint.

We'll update here again to let you know when the code push is imminent!

Just a reminder

Apr. 27th, 2017 05:48 am
kengr: (Brain)
[personal profile] kengr
If you are being *really* traditional (ie going by the position of the sun) Beltane won't be until 07:28 GMT on May 5th.


Stupid writers

Apr. 27th, 2017 04:53 am
kengr: (idiot-free)
[personal profile] kengr
On Criminal Minds tonight they they had someone poisoning people with an "irradiated poison".

I was willing to accept that, though it was kinda silly. and it apparently *swiftly* (like within a couple of minutes) induced symptoms of a heart attack. Then, besides radiation poisoning it was cause multiple organ failures. The radiation was short half-life so it was "harmless" with in a day or two.

Turns out the perp had been stealing the stuff for six years or so from various hospitals radio-medicine units.

Which just plain *doesn't work*.

If it has that short a half-life it'd not be capable of causing radiation poisoning within *days* after it was stolen.

Also, nothing these used for radio-medicine is *remotely* that toxic. Nor would it do the "induce a heart attack" bit.

Also, they evacuated a neighborhood because the perp had dumped some down a sink. Yet at the same time, the perp who *worked* with this stuff and thus knew how to safely handle it, carried a container around in her *pocket*

Basically, if it can be safely carried in a pocket, even for a short time, it winding up in the sewer isn't a big deal.

So, essentially, the writers did *no* research.
17catherines: Amor Vincit Omnia (Default)
[personal profile] 17catherines
It went well.  It went really well.  And, interestingly, finally hearing everything in order made the voices stand out more.  The first part of the program was me and the countertenor doing early baroque things, and we both have fairly light baroque voices unless we are actively trying not to.  And then the baritone, who has quite a big voice, came in and sang a Beethoven solo, after which the mezzo and the tenor, both of whom have really *big* opera voices, joined us for a big Beethoven chorus and scared everyone in the front row.

The second half started with the Tenor and the Mezzo having their big operatic solos, then we had the Franz Jägerstatter stuff, a duet from the Merry Widow, and then Gilbert and Sullivan, which by that time came as a welcome relief to everyone, I'm fairly sure.  And our encore was the Brindisi.  So I had a nice rest for most of part two, and then had to run around at the end (literally, in fact, because our conductor started playing the introduction for the chorus in which I have the opening solo while the tenor and I were still taking our bows for the duet in front of the piano, and the chorus requires us to be behind the piano with everyone else), with three solos in a row, all in a bigger, more operatic style than I am accustomed to singing in.  And all with top Bs and B flats in them.  My legs were shaking by the time I was done.  But fortunately my cold held off long enough for my top Bs to be there right at the end.

As for the duets, about which I realise I have spoken FAR TOO MUCH already, but this is my journal so I can be boring if I like...

The duet with the countertenor was, I think, the most transcendent musical experience of my life to date.  I'm still breathless thinking about it.  I've sung Pur Ti Miro before, with a tenor, and that was a lot of fun, but singing it with a countertenor means that you are both in the same register, and your voices wind around each other and blend in a very sensual way, and it's just breathtaking.  Literally, actually – this particular countertenor is very easy to sing with (our voices match quite effortlessly), which is a good thing, because the intimacy created by the music and by staring into each other's eyes for the entire duration of the duet, I really was having trouble remembering to breathe.  And not melt.  He really is unfairly good-looking, and that voice is just beautiful.

From what various audience members said afterwards, the duet was a highlight for them, too, which is good to know.  I wasn't even aware of the audience, to be honest.

The Brindisi was fun - I just followed the tenor's lead in being fairly over the top, and we wound up singing the last verse at each other in a cheeky and amusing fashion.

And then of course there was the Gilbert and Sullivan duet, and which was a lot of fun at the time, but hilarious in retrospect.  We hadn't actually practiced in the concert space, and the main thing we had really discussed was our closing pose – which is like one of the more modern ballroom dance holds, left hands held at shoulder height, and his arm around my waist.  And other than that, I said, look, just indicate what you want me to do and I'll follow. 

This particular song has me singing to him, then a chorus together, then him singing to me, then more chorus.  The first part went as expected, but then we got to his verse, and suddenly, we seemed to be doing a bit of dancing.  There would be an arm around my waist, there would be handholding, and so forth.  I went where I was put, wondering why the tenor had decided to make this so complicated for himself, but also quite enjoying it, and trying to respond with compatible and appropriate gestures, because really, it was easier than standing there trying to find a whole verse's worth of ways to look sweet and adoring. 

Afterwards, we had several people come up to us and commented on our lovely choreography and how good it was and who had come up with it, and the tenor said modest things about it being improvised.  And then (when the audience was gone) I asked him why he had done that.

Well, it turns out that I was playing by choir concert rules - soloist steps forward at the start of her verse, and then steps back at the end - while the tenor was playing by stage rules - soloist steps backwards at the start of his voice, the better to sing to his duet partner without having to look away from the audience.  And I kept shifting back during his verse so that he would be in front of me – something I wasn't even aware that I was doing, it was that instinctive.  So our entire – and apparently very pretty – choreography was the tenor trying to get me to stand somewhere that he could sing to me comfortably, and me moving into precisely the wrong spot every time he stopped actively doing so!  Oops.  Fortunately, he was as amused by the whole thing as I was, and I was treated to an advanced seminar in the car on the way home on the history of upstaging (in the technical, rather than the perjorative sense) and the basics of stagecraft.  (This is where more than two runs of the piece before we performed it would probably have helped...)

And then I went home and could not sleep because so much music and so much singing and oh, that countertenor and his beautiful eyes!

(He's happily partnered.  I'm happily married.  Doesn't matter.  He still has beautiful eyes.)

So yes.  The concert over, and here I am at the end of my holiday.  I'm back at work tomorrow, because, annoyingly, there were a bunch of things going on that meant I couldn't finish the week at home.  I've got a lot less done than I meant to, but then, I really did spend a lot of time singing.

And I'm definitely getting a cold.  But at least I got through the concert first.  And I'm so very glad I had the chance to sing it.  Especially given how apprehensive I was about quite large chunks of it this time last week.

Submission status, ANALOG, 04/26/2017

Apr. 26th, 2017 05:09 pm
niall_shapero: Fox Mask (Default)
[personal profile] niall_shapero
When I last checked (the 17th) ANOTHER BALL was still listed as open. Today, it's been rejected -- I expect to get many more (but it would have been nice if they'd at least sent me an e-mail rejection, so that I could add it to my collection). I take some comfort, at least, in the fact that it took them eight weeks or so to reject the story (they claim a two to six week period), so I hope that it at least made it past the first cut. (It's a story, anyway...)

I'm about a third of the way through final rewrite of another story, so I should have another submission ready for ANALOG in a week or two (another roughly 20,000 word story). We'll see if they like this one (no, I do NOT intend to give up).

ANALOG 170426

slug fest?

Apr. 26th, 2017 09:28 am
kengr: (Default)
[personal profile] kengr
Came across a link to an interesting article while re-reading some old posts in other folks LJs (I'm cleaning up the old comment notifications, and read the original posts to get context)

Seems banana slugs are edible.

Another comment after the one with the link notes that you should keep them for several days and feed them on "safe" stuff to make sure they are purged of any toxins from eating things they can eat but humans can't.

even with that caution, it is tempting to go out to Forest Park to harvest some.. :-)

Oh yeah, several sorts of garden snails are edible as well. Though you have to isolate them for even longer because they may have picked up pestocides from other peoples gardens.

Nearly concert time...

Apr. 26th, 2017 12:31 pm
17catherines: Amor Vincit Omnia (Default)
[personal profile] 17catherines
And I'm actually really excited about it now.  We had our second and final rehearsal yesterday, and it went very well.  And the duets are going to be fine, after all.

I sent an email to my tenor duet partner, saying that I would appreciate some direction on how we are staging the love duets (I know he directs a lot of Gilbert and Sullivan, and one of our duets is from Iolanthe), because I've only ever sung in recitals and concerts, and thus have no stagecraft and feel super awkward.  He didn't reply to my email or make any comment at the rehearsal, but when we got to our duet, he had quietly come up with staging that I'm a lot more comfortable with (no fake kissing) and can actually do (bonus points for this, because I am *not* a coordinated individual).   Since he is always a pleasure to sing with, vocally speaking, I think the duet is actually going to be really fun. And I suspect that whatever weird underlying communication issues we have are resolved - we actually managed to have a conversation that was fun rather than vaguely awkward and prickly, which was nice.  Though if he makes ridiculously lovelorn faces at me throughout my part of the duet the way he was doing yesterday, my ability to not laugh will be severely tested...

As for the duet with Countertenor... oh my.  We didn't get to rehearse last week, because he was sick, so yesterday was our first full run-through.  And the thing with Countertenor is that he really does have one of the most beautiful voices I've heard, so singing with him always feels too good to be true – like suddenly singing a duet with Ian Bostridge or Bejun Mehta or something.   I have a serious musical crush on this man (he was singing Rameau's Sejour de l'eternelle paix right before our duet and it was just swoonworthy – countertenor voices are either angelic and almost eerie, or screechy and horrible, there is no in between, and his definitely falls into the first category).  And our voices blend so well in this piece that we kept on accidentally grinning at each other because it was just so much fun and it sounded so good.  But also, somehow we wound up singing this duet staring into each other's eyes for most of the time, and I was having a lot of trouble not blushing because a) terrible musical crush aforementioned and b) he has lovely eyes and ridiculously long eyelashes, something I had not previously noticed but now appreciate a bit too much. 

So yeah, that's going to be pretty good, for me if for nobody else!

The weird Hitler opera is still weird Hitler opera, and I am still very, very glad not to have a solo in it, though the others are all consummate musicians and doing extremely well with nightmarish material.  I'm finding that I can decipher the Austrian dialect quite well, for basic comprehension purposes, which is surprising, because my German isn't that good, and the people who actually speak fluent German in the group are having trouble with it.  So at least I'm contributing something to it!  And everyone's solos are sounding great.  I do prefer the front end of the program (mostly baroque) to the back end (mostly Hitler opera and Gilbert and Sullivan), but if nothing else, it's a really interesting and varied program, and the voices are excellent. 

And I have a very cute dress, which I had a lot of fun buying, because it turned out that the shop assistant was a fellow mezzo and had also sung the St John Passion with a different group during Lent.  We bonded over the nightmares associated with 'Wohin', and serenaded Myers with 'Lasset uns der nicht zerteilen' and 'Herr!  Unser Herrscher!'.  And then my dress scanned for less than half what it was supposed to at checkout, and she applied the discount, and when I said, um, I kind of hate to mention this, but I'm pretty sure I should be paying about $100 more than you are charging me, she looked at the price tag and said, hmm, yes, that is what the price tag says, and it's probably right, but I can only charge you what the scanner is saying, so you're in luck. 

I have also decided to wear my wedding crown/tiara/wreath thingie (you can see it a little bit in my icon - it's like a wreath made of peridots strung on wire with little semi-precious stones (rose quartz, amethyst, citrine, carnelian) like flowers or berries) in lieu of a wig to somewhat disguise my very short hair.  It does make the hair look more feminine, and if one is a soprano, one does what one must.  Also, it does look like a wreath of leaves and blossoms, and since every single duet or aria I am singing involves me being a fairy or a Queen, I feel that this is entirely appropriate! 

(My only concern at this point is that I woke up today with an earache and a sore throat... noooooo...)

In writing news, the first of my RITA reviews is up on Smart Bitches Trashy Books.  To my amusement, a side comment I made about the idiocy of the heroine jumping into the sea in her wedding dress and how water safety is taught in Australian schools spawned a lengthy comment thread on the subject of water safety, garnering far more comments than the book itself.

I also managed to finally write Pantin's first story for my Stories Under Paris site, which means that I have sketched out the three remaining stories in his arc.  I have not managed to write anything else this week, which is frustrating, but I've just been feeling too tired and under the weather and all my energy has gone to singing.

God, I hope this cold can hold off for another day, though.  I've put way too much work into this to lose my voice halfway through...

Daily Journal #8

Apr. 25th, 2017 01:59 pm
lemmozine: (Default)
[personal profile] lemmozine
I think I lost a day in there somewhere. I was without sleep for 31 hours, traveling for 14 hours, slept 14 hours, but let's go back to Friday.

FilkOntario 27 con report: I've been to 13 out of 27 FilkOntarios now. If I go next year (and I certainly intend to), I will be up to the 50% point for attendance. 🍭I just threw in a random lollipop to see if DW supports lollipops.

I know, I've talked about the con already, but now, post-blur, the highlights may have changed.

Saturday, I stayed up until about 2:00 on
minimal sleep. I recall performing one song in circle. I think it was a space theme of some kind. I played "Pluto Song," to the tune of "It's a Sin to Tell a Lie," which I learned long ago from Steve Goodman, and got chords, as I recall, from either Harry Reser's "Let's Play the Uke," or possibly from the sheet music in Ian Whitcomb's Tin Pan Alley. A parody I wrote about 42 years ago. I feel so OLD!

I got in 8 hours of sleep, enjoyed the wonderful food and people in the con suite for lunch, and stopped in the dealer's room, where I ordered a shirt made of cloth featuring Elvis playing a uke. It may be a little bit before I get the shirt, due to a broken finger on the person who's making it. When I found out I said, "Make sure you heal first and work on my shirt second. I'm not going to bother you about it."

When I get it in the mail, I will be wonderfully surprised.

Friday night, I bought both acoustic and electric versions of Eric and Lizzie's new CD. I notice I didn't say anything about the concerts. I remember everything was wonderful, and I was there for nearly all of it, but I didn't take notes, and details are gone from my addled brain.

I was there for nearly all the concerts Saturday. I stopped in the dealers room to say hello to Peter Cox, and watched him selling a beautiful-sounding antique banjo he'd built a neck for. Seeing how happy his customers are when they buy is a joyful thing. When he told me he's thinking about getting out of the luthier business, it made me sad. The cittern he built for me is - well, it's perfect. I think I bought it in 2009.

The interfilk guest concert was amazing. The GoH concert was amazing. They were all amazing.

The filk hall of fame banquet - I was sitting between Larry Kirby and Juanita Coulson. I apologized to Larry for practically ignoring him - Juanita is a fascinating person. She has done so much. She knows so much. There was some table discussion about guessing who would be honored. I pointed out that the Bohnhoffs were far from home, and didn't have a concert scheduled. I think it was Juanita who guessed Gary Hanak. We agreed that it was difficult to guess when the recipient is either not present or attends FKO regularly.

So, between us, we guessed 2 out of 3. The third was Judi Miller. I am extremely pleased with all three honorees. Gary has singlehandedly kept filk alive in St. Louis. He was also kind enough, even though we had never met, to include me in the round robin at the 2007 NASFiC. That was the one where someone reviewed the concert online and said I had a crummy voice and shouldn't sing. Luckily for me, I didn't believe them. But I remember how kind Gary was to me, and his professionalism as a musician.

Judi Miller has been an inspiration to me, and to a lot of other people. She is just one of the best overall people I know. When she signs, it's way more than just signing. It's acting. It's pantomime. And it's clowning. Judi has the rare comic talent of, perhaps, a Lucille Ball or a Harpo Marx.

And Jeff and Maya, also kind people, in addition to writing some of the most finely crafted parodies I've heard, and bringing some seriously over-the-top professional music skills to filk, have also been helpful to people who needed to get their recordings produced.


I had a comment about the awards guessing game that I posted to the FKO group, and the response was overwhelmingly positive. I'd thought I detected some negativity concerning playing the guessing game, and wanted to set people straight. There are two possibilities for a guess: right or wrong. Right, well, yeah, you won the game. Wrong is even better than right, because if you guessed wrong, you need to get nominions in for those people.

I had a one shot after the banquet. I decided to play "Please Laugh At Me." I don't think I quite have the performance right yet, but I sense it's getting better. I got one very nice compliment on it though. My goal, if I have one, is to get the audience to be sad, and not laugh.

I went to the cd release, and then the acapella circle. Loved what I heard. On my turn, I tried "Home Again," which is Gilligan's Island reset to Mary Ellen Carter, with additional words. Sadly, my voice chose to die out mid-song due to allergies. I did more stuff, and again was off to sleep around 2:00.

Sunday I was expecting to meet a friend who lives in the area. His kid ran off with his car and phone. It didn't work out. The onion rings at a&w burned the roof of my mouth.

Sunday concerts included Juanita Coulson and the FHOF concert. I was headed to find my fingerpicks for the jam when Larry K. invited me to dinner. Montana's. Steak. Yum.

Got to the dead penguin early, and enjoyed doing a bit of playing instrumental music with Cat Faber. Also did a brief mandolin teaching session. Talked about downstrokes and upstrokes with the flat pick. Normal is mostly alternating down and up. Bill Monroe style is all down. Cross picking (McReynolds style) is down up up down up up down up. I didn't get into triplets. The only mandolin song I ever hear much in triplets is The Irish Washerwoman, aka Starving to Death on my Government Claim.

I think I did two songs in the circle. One was one of my older songs, I think. The other was my parody of "These Foolish Things." Judi signed it. I mostly didn't watch, but I had to, a little bit. I gave away some CDs.

Said goodnight to a few people. Back to room. Packed. Shower. More packing. No sleep. Left at 3:00 am for airport.

Josh and Lisa were on my flight to JFK. I enjoyed spending time with them.

I think security at YYZ is where I lost my ziploc bag of travel liquids. I have a reason why I suspect that. I didn't notice they were missing until I was on my 3rd plane.

Missed connection, but they got me on a flight to Detroit right away, with just enough time to grab a quick lunch in Detroit before my flight to Denver. I should have read the place on my boarding class where it said "meal" before I bought lunch at McD's. I was upgraded to first because coach was full. I also got an exit row seat from JFK to Detroit. Classy.

This morning, I was up at 6:30. I called my plumber/hvac friend Steve and he had to reschedule me. Next Tuesday. Did a bit of cleaning up anyhow, went downtown to check my box mail, stopped at Walgreens for 3 vitamins/supplements I needed, and also to replace the items from my lost liquids baggie. 4 empty travel bottles for shampoo. A smaller empty spray bottle because I couldn't find travel size glasses cleaner. Saline nasal spray in travel size. I have tons of travel toothpaste. I have extra bottles of flonase. I'm now on my backup inhaler, which expires in a few months, and I can get another before then.

Then I treated myself to Thai food from a cart on the mall, which is just incredible.

I spent some time beginning to clean my gigantic 6x8 upstairs shower. Big job. Got tired. Typed this. And now it's 4.00 pm and I'm caught up.

Restarting my regular Blog posts...

Apr. 25th, 2017 07:56 am
seawasp: (Default)
[personal profile] seawasp
and today it's Dragonball Xenoverse, one of the more recent fighting games from the venerable Dragonball franchise!

Oracle of Bacon

Apr. 24th, 2017 12:45 pm
kengr: (Default)
[personal profile] kengr
while wading thru some old stuff in my LJ inbox (to clean it up) I ran across an old post where I stated that my Kevin Bacon number was 4. This was based on the Oracle of Bacon

That number was based on a local "celebrity known as Darklady. She had a 3, so, since I've known her for years, that gave me a 4.

Well, I decided to try a different approach. I've met Larry Niven several times, at cons and at book signings...
He's got a Bacon number of 2. So I've got a three.

If you *really* want to stretch things, Ricardo Montalban was a customer at a restaurant I was working at in 1974. He's got a bacon number of 1, so that'd give me a 2.

Daily Journal #7 (delayed)

Apr. 24th, 2017 01:13 am
lemmozine: (Default)
[personal profile] lemmozine
In an hour and a half, I have to get up, leave this room, and catch a shuttle to the airport. Technically, it's Monday already, but I haven't been to sleep yet. And don't feel up to sleeping for such a short time. I did set my alarm in case I drift off.

Sunday I was supposed to meet a local friend for lunch. Never showed up. No message. No answer to phone call. Maybe lost his phone or something. I went across the street for a mouth burning burger (probably the onion rings). Juanita Coulson did a wonderful concert, then the Filk Hall of Fame concert happened. The logistic of taking turns when there were multiple people on stage with various plugins were handled seamlessly. The music was great as well.

I was planning to join the jam, but instead had an opportunity to go to dinner with Larry and Deborah, two of my favorite people. Got to the circle early. Listened to many songs. Sang a couple or three myself. Judi Miller signed my parody of "These Foolish Things." So great. I am very pleased to know these people and be a part of this community.

Left the circle on the early side to get packed and ready to travel.

Done this week (20170416Su - 22Sa)

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

Another long month this week. Guess we're going to keep having those for a while. Didn't finish doing my taxes, but figured out an upper bound and filed for an extension. OK, that was the easy part.

Wednesday, on short notice, Naomi and I went to Whidbey Island to look at houses. The first was quirky and magical, especially the land, but it would have taken quite a lot of work to make it habitable. The second was move-in ready and a safe bet, but it's never going to be much better than what it is now. The safe one was going to be looking at offers Thursday, so we put in a bid for asking price. We got it.

Thursday, in addition to finding out that our bid for the Whidbey Island house had been accepted, we got the counter-offer from the buyers for our Seattle house. We now have the choice between getting the work done ourselves, which would get us more money but has some risk, and giving the buyers a price reduction. It may come down to cash flow.

Saturday, Colleen and I decided to go out for dinner... and found the elevator broken. You can read about that little comedy of errors (none of them ours) downwhen in my previous post. A few things stand out:

  1. An SOP that includes "call the fire department" for after-hours elevator maintenance is clearly wrong.
  2. If you're going to have maintenance people "on call" but don't have an SLA for them, you have a problem.
  3. If the only contact information on your website is a phone number, a twitter handle, and a facebook name, something that would otherwise result in an annoyed email is instead going to make you look stupid in public.

Still worried.

Notes & links, as usual )

Broken elevator, broken SOPs

Apr. 22nd, 2017 09:06 pm
mdlbear: (penguin-rant)
[personal profile] mdlbear

Email to our apartment manager. Or the leasing office -- it's not clear who the "info@" account is connected to.

<rant> )


Daily Journal #6

Apr. 22nd, 2017 10:08 pm
lemmozine: (Default)
[personal profile] lemmozine
So. The plane was delayed. 20 minutes. Hahahahaha. I spent 3 hours, after getting 3 hours sleep, right by a speaker, and sitting next to a very polite fellow who was apparently hyperactive, and reading a book by Bill O'Reilly. Sleep on the flight amounted to around 4 minutes total in 30 second increments.

Customs wasn't bad. Not a lot of questions this time.

The shuttle had just left when I called. Half an hour waiting for a shuttle.

Got to the convention, checked into the hotel, and was sent to room 328. Next time I went to the room, my key didn't work. Turns out they'd previously sent my roommate to 238.

That led to a debacle. Suffice it to say, 2 unhappy people.

The new lighting in the hotel, at registration and around all the room doors, is blinding strobe lights that are triggering a whole lot of migraines and causing misery. I don't get migraines, but they're causing me discomfort.

The convention itself has been wonderful. The guests, the concerts, the hall of fame honorees - everything was great.

There are a whole lot of things about this hotel that have changed for the worse. It has served the convention well, but it's time to go hunting for someplace else.

I got a decent amount of sleep after staying up until 2:00, and have felt OK today.

More tomorrow.

Moldy Oldy

Apr. 22nd, 2017 03:14 pm
kengr: (Default)
[personal profile] kengr
Someone mentioned Benson in a post I was reading somewhere the other day. So I went digging.

At first I thought that show was a spinoff from Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman, but digging further got the right show, Soap.

So I added that to the rotation of what Fay and I watch when we've run out of current episodes of things.

It worked great too. Benson was being Benson within the first five minutes of the first episode. As I expected, Fay loved it.

We wound up watching a second episode, and I'd forgotten that Jodi Dallas (Billy Crystal's character) was not only gay, but trans (at least a crossdresser if not TS). Heck, they even refferred to him as a TS.

Considering that it was a 40 year old comedy program, they actually handled it well.


Apr. 22nd, 2017 05:32 pm
seawasp: (Default)
[personal profile] seawasp
... request entry to

community rykspoor_beta so I can add you in!

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