Angelic Eye for the Gendered-Species Individual
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July 22 2014
Have received email from my sister, talked to my mother at length on the phone, and mailed my father. It looks like most of the potential rucki associated with trying to organise family stuff have been headed off or are receding, but it is also looking quite unlikely that I will find a way to see my Adoptive Big Sister on this trip, which really kind of sucks. (Particularly as I only found out the other week that she is visiting family in New Jersey right now, and there's this nagging feeling that if I had organised things a bit better or with more advance notice I could maybe have sorted out her visiting me for a few days before that.)
Reprinted railpass is back with me all present and correct, finally and thankfully. Also got a bunch of organising stuff done at the weekend, including taking a couple of street art photos that should be up soon, and watched Pacific Rim again, which was fun and uplifting, and The World's End, which was less so; am definitely not in the right frame of mind to be sympathetic to guys almost exactly my age embracing fairly stupid/self-destructive values of immaturity in desperate attempts to hold onto their youth. Even if the writing is sharp, the acting good, and the soundtrack perfect.
Combination of world news, work being frustrating, and stuff going on with various people I care about and in various bits of the internets, is making me feel kind of shaky and worn (particularly when I let my blood sugar get low), so for the next bit I am endeavouring not to seek out things that might worsen that. Note: this does not mean I am any less willing to listen or be otherwise helpful as I can to people I care about: I do have a concern that the people I am most motivated and happy to be a supporting presence for often tend to be people who might easily think that me being a bit of a twitchy pangolin means they should leave me alone and not impose on me, so unless I have said directly in so many words that you are imposing on me, work on the basis that you're not.
redbird is going to be here tomorrow evening, which should be fun, though coming in later than I had thought. And, in an incident reminiscent of things that happened with annoying regularity at my previous workplace, I have been invited to a work colleague's housewarming the evening after I fly to Hyperborea.
July 19 2014
plan plan plan:
todo in town tomorrow:
- post stuff
- clip to replace broken one on my bag
- refills for comfort pen (black)
- check Chapters/Indigo for Kill City Blues pb and buy if it is there (wish the "check in store near you" function hadn't hidden itself in their latest web page redesign)
- look for Alice band to match Homestuck t-shirt
- rubber mat thing for top of washing machine so I can move the dish-drying rack off the too-small draining surface
- bread, caffeine
- don't forget to eat lunch
July 18 2014
breathing in air:
papersky has set off on further travels, so I am home alone again. Work is being a bit on the balky side, I am stalled in several directions right now which is a bit irritating. I have watched Cool World, in which the combination of Gabriel Byrne and young Brad Pitt and Ralph Bakshi doing the Roger Rabbit thing in a Ralph Bakshi way does not really add up to anything I have a strong reaction to one way or the other, and also A Fistful of Dollars which has mostly made me want to read the Dark Tower books again. Still got a chunk of Capital in the Twenty-First Century to get through, which has that particular ponderousness that seems unique to technical academic French translated into English; I can sympathise with the point of strongly buttressing and bullet-proofing your arguments against certain sorts of wrongheadedness, and building said arguments on a ground such that people who espouse said wrongheadedness but do have intellectual integrity can't a priori dismiss your arguments because of axiom lock, but - particularly by comparison with the range of ways humans do economics-related things covered in Graeber's Debt - this particular set of axioms are striking me as limited at best.
Today I shall get Australian pies on the way home and then try to write. Tomorrow's plan is to go downtown and get arious bits and bobs and also to make All The Phone Calls, as sorting out what I do when with whom when visiting family in Ireland looks like being a bit complex. (Save for my father, whom I am going to mail once the rest is closer to sorted, as that is a much better way of avoiding both "helpful" suggestions that don't scale with my actual priorities, and also the potential awkwardness of having to directly reject such in realtime without screaming, maniacal laughter or other things of that ilk.)
On the plus side, logistically, I have figured out and noted down which trains I want to take where for pretty much all of the trip (save for going up from London with livredor, and gosh that's only a month from today) and how to sensibly meet up with P prior to Worldcon. Also, fomorian has confirmed coming to Worldcon and fortunately has somewhere to stay and is sorting out how much time off he can afford to take, and it will be great to introduce him to people.
On the negative side, Canada Post tracking confirms that my returned railpass arrived with the railpass people yesterday but they've not emailed me as requested; I hope this means they are processing and sending straight back, but it would be good for my anxiety levels to hear from them damn it.
July 14 2014
seem to whisper to me, when you smile:
Washing machine arrived. It works. This helps a lot.
I have spoken to the railpass people just before coming in to work today who say they can print me a version of the railpass with my name corrected without actually re-processing the whole thing, but I have to send them back the actual pass, so print out a letter and do that tomorrow.
Had pleasant dim sum out on Sunday morning; weekend spent otherwise largely going flop from heat or humidity or both, also ploughing my way through Piketty's Capital in the Twenty-First Century.
July 9 2014
advice sought from Oxford people; places to eat:
I'm going to be passing through Oxford Sunday August 10 to have lunch with cenwolfgirl, who has just got a new guide dog. Does anyone have recommendations for somewhere good to eat that is reasonably reachable on foot from the railway station, not a pub, open Sunday lunchtime/afternoon, and friendly to guide dogs ? I'd like to sort this fairly soon so that cenwolfgirl and dog have plenty of time to learn the relevant routes.
incoherent noises of annoyance:
The new annotations I got from one of the curators this morning to load, and have been through a number of awkward hoops to make work, turn out not to be things that go in through my code after all, because that particular chunk of data comes through $colleague's annoying-duplication-of-effort interface rather than mine, and hence need to be sent to $colleague; that was a morning of mine wasted and is not at all fair on the curators either.
July 7 2014
a more tired than I thought sort of weekend:
papersky got home safe on Friday, and it's been hot but not utterly hellish since. We had very nice sushi out with alixsin Saturday evening, and I have been mostly watching media and napping and having baths otherwise. The Globe 1 Henry IV has on the whole got the best Falstaff and the best Hotspur I have ever seen. Also, how much monster-of-the-week do I have to get through in Supernatural before it starts having angels ? (I was promised angels... ) Also, we are warned about potential storm this evening, and I do hope that does not happen until after I pick up laundry and navigate it safely home.
July 4 2014
we forgive as we forget:
Rain. 16 C and no humidity worth the noting. This is a merciful relief for the day papersky gets home.
The particular bit of shouldn't-be-too-difficult-but-kind-of-t
July 2 2014
flopping like a beached fish:
The peak of the heatwave seems to have passed; yesterday it topped out at 33 C with humidity to 41, which is too hot even for me. (Still entirely preferable to it being bloody freezing out, let alone the bit of thaw where it freezes overnight and then melts during the day so water standing on ice is all around, though.) I spent most of the day sitting at the computer and hydrating, talking to people and consuming non-challenging media. I can do this.
Welcome to Night Vale live was a good show. This one, "The Librarian" is a fairly self-contained episode set before the events of "Parade Day", with several guest actors, and one long chunk near the end that I expect will be cut for distribution, on the general theme of "listeners, we know you are safely barricaded in your homes, but just imagine if you were in a theatre", with the left and right sides of the venue encouraged to scream in turn and so on. Also much of Cecil Baldwin's body language while performing is uncannily like fomorian's. (And he opened this one with "Bienvenue a Night Vale.")
Other than that Monday was an irritating day. I was in work early and left early with the intention of picking laundry up, but the laundromat was already closed when I got there (half an hour before the time they had up as their current closing and an hour before their regular closing). Fortunately I woke up stupidly early today and was in work even earlier so will leave early again today. Also, Strega have repainted, to a more conventional, two-tone brown that is lighter and airier and I do not like it at all, "cavelike" was their big selling point to me.
There is still lots of interesting alcohol left from the party we had just before papersky went away, which I had intended to sample and possibly consume over the past few weeks, but have not for the most part because a) strong drink in conditions of intense heat and humidity seems unwise and b) I very much prefer not to drink much when seriously stressing or grumpy about something. This too is irritating.
June 30 2014
remind me why I am one of those who favour fire again ?:
It has been a quietish weekend of mostly staying in and going flop in front of the computer, watching movies (is it just me or does a movie with such thoroughly punk sensibilities as Repo Man having a Criterion edition feel a bit off?) and hydrating a lot to cope with the 29 C and savage humidity; today and tomorrow are supposed to be hotter again. I am glad I did not leave any tidying of the sort requiring especially much physical exertion to do this weekend. We may have rain and thunder to cut these conditions and I do hope that does not happen at the point when I am actually going home, though carrying laundry home bids fair not to be much fun regardless.
The massive reshuffle of server stuff on Friday and Saturday appears to have been partly successful; I am not working around any more obstacles than I had been anyway, and at least one fewer.
Oh, and in re the question I posted yesterday, what I was looking for was this, which would appear to have been reworked into a more generic-looking shooter since; not that I'd have much use for a four-person co-operative game on a system I don't own, but it looked offbeat enough that I'd vaguely been hoping for mildly interesting playthrough videos at some point.
And tonight I am seeing Welcome to Night Vale live. Going out to eat first, probably in Strega because it has been a while.
June 29 2014
knowledge contained in the internet &c.:
I am looking for a particular video game trailer, for what I think was a first-person shooter with a four-person team, which was in the format of the team leader, hung over, giving an interview about the team with background bits of them in action, and it was sardonically funny and had explosions in and I saw it on my flist at some point I think a year or two ago now and I can't find it now. Does anyone remember what I am talking about ?
June 27 2014
washing-machine saga continued:
It would appear to transpire, after repeated calls and waiting for calls back over the last close to six hours, that what the email I got on Wednesday saying "we can deliver this on Saturday" and the conversations earlier today saying "oh, it will probably be there tomorrow, let us find your record and call you back" actually meant, once I got high enough up the chain to talk to someone who could find the information and confirm it (which took a kind of obstreperous persistence I hate having to do above almost all things), was that the washing machine will be delivered sometime between 0800 and 1300 on Saturday July 12.
It is too late to be worth writing tonight, so I am going to hide in a hole. At least DNFL and family are gone on their road trip so this can involve watching a movie at this hour. And at least I do not have to be awake for 8 am tomorrow.
Current Mood: searing flame of umbrage
selection of irritants:
- the Bay persist in being snotty about me not being home during business hours to answer the phone in cases when I have told them twice in different media that that wasn't going to happen, and being highly erratic in response to emails.
- ensuingly, I have no idea whether there will be a washing machine delivered at some point tomorrow morning or not. Therefore I have no idea whether it makes sense to write this evening or not, as staying up working late is not a great idea if I have to be up and ready to cope with possible delivery at 8 am.
- laundry not only being open reduced summer hours, but being highly approximate in terms of when it will actually open such that I was not as early into work as I hoped.
- medium-brief power outage this morning at just the wrong point in my mood-raising silly media fluff, and just too long for me to watch the rest afterwards.
- there is actually some non-trivial good news but it has to stay under embargo for annoying reasons.
- because of highly necessary and longer-term helpful major server stuff being done by our sysadminny people this afternoon and tomorrow, I don't have time to get the thing $colleague wants me to do done before Monday. (Should be doable Monday if all the server stuff works smoothly, which is plausible but not really predictable.)
I am going to deal with all of the above by leaving slightly early for half-day Friday, having lunch in Kashima ("We need sushi. Lots of sushi.") and picking some stuff up on the way home. And reminding myself that Monday evening I get to see Welcome to Night Vale live.
June 25 2014
(Because when Jean-Baptiste is on a Tuesday, we get the Tuesday off rather than the nearest Monday.)
Yesterday it poured rain, so I stayed in and mostly watched media. I still like both Alien3 and Alien Resurrection more than most people who talk about them seem to, and I am impressed with Memento now that I finally got to it. I also had a bath, because of the thematically apt things to do for Jean-Baptiste, immersion in water was the most straightforward. And have over the last bit done a fair amount of picking up post and going to the bank and annual cleaning things of the moving furniture and sweeping beneath variety, so reasonably on top of that. Also had a pleasant long conversation with my Evil Siamese Twin on Monday, various fun chats with redbird, daharyn and livredor, and a chat with papersky just this morning yay. And I have had a bit more interaction with the Hudson's Bay Company, whom I am really hoping will finally deliver the long-delayed washing machine this coming Saturday morning (which would mean writing Saturday rather than Friday). I'm really glad I have learned not to trust my body on the matter of when I am hungry, because it's still the case that if I relied on how I feel rather than thinking things out there I would be absently not eating for a few days at a time. And I can't wait for the World Cup to be over so we have fewer noisy people driving around honking and also be done with this run of animated Google doodles.
June 18 2014
lists make everything look more organised:
Laundry: finally retrieved this morning. Opening hours appear to have changed so yesterday evening's retrieval was again a fail.
Washing machine: going into the Bay got me a number to call and a copy of the relevant order. May call this evening if I can face it. (Tired. Very tired.)
Lobster poutine at Frites Alors: Lobster, bechamel sauce, frites, green onions, cheese. Delicious. A "small" would be good to share between four or five people as a side dish. Eating a whole one may not have been the wisest thing I ever did in my life.
Fringe: technically off-Fringe but Fringe passes count so I'm not sure why the distinction. Turning Tricks, two hours of singing, dancing, stage magic, burlesque, drag, puppetry, more singing, acrobatics, knife-throwing, incidental exuberant nudity and a man dressed as a chicken, wrapped up in a plot about a gleefully sketchy cabaret troupe and the evil soul-sucking genie of the Book of Faces. Smart and funny and full of energy with probably the greatest range and density of rude jokes I have ever encountered in one sitting. A really good instance of the kind of thing it is.
Hot bath: definitely helped despite the lateness of the hour.
Current Mood: sleep-short
June 17 2014
"Where we're going you won't need any pants!":
...yes, I have introduced daharyn to Avatar:tLA, with some success. Last night was a quiet night in that also featured pizza.
Today daharyn is on a southbound train, I am awaiting $project_manager for a meeting that was supposed to start 15 minutes ago; then going to pick up laundry, and go downtown and try to arrange washing machine re-delivery with the Bay. Probably also have a hot bath depending on when I get in.
DNFL and family are going away for six weeks from Friday of next week on a road-trip to California. This is a very cheering prospect on the late-night movie front.
June 16 2014
Today was the day, at work, when I couldn't not upgrade from Ubuntu 10.04 any more. I am really not liking 12.04. Really.
weekend with Fringe:
First Friday of summer half-days; met daharyn for lunch in the Main. Got Fringe passes and tickets, then went home for a bit as the show we wanted to see was not until quite a bit later. There was rain. Later, we saw Real Dead Ghosts, daharyn's choice, which was exactly the kind of thing I'd likely not have picked myself, and was brilliant; a couple on holiday talking through relationship stuff in depth and detail, brilliant acting and solid psychology and definitely not to be missed.
Saturday: a nice slow pottering about start. Went out to Chinatown for dinner, which was a bit rushing and fraught because I had not really thought through how busy Saturday evening would be. Went to see Breghella, new contemporary commedia dell'arte, which was bawdy and bloody and hilarious and is highly recommended, and then Chamber Music, a play about eight women in an asylum each thinking they are a different historical figure, which was a misfire; incoherent, wavering back and forth between funny moments and casual painful cruelty, and though there was some good acting the script was too slight for any of the characters to read as more than caricature.
Yesterday: gosh, what a fun new Welcome to Night Vale even with cliffhanger. Went out in the afternoon and enjoyed St. Laurent street fair; there is a mural festivally thing going on this weekend so there's a ton of awesome new street art. Also went to see 25th which was a fairly basic burlesque; fun and with one guy who could really dance, but the kind of audience response that enlivens such a show needs a larger audience than it had, and also it was surprisingly brief. Then Blood Wild, the new Paul Van Dyck play, which is a Western riff on aftermath-of-a-robbery-with-stuff-happen
Also we are caught up on Orphan Black. And tonight is going to be a quiet night in.
June 12 2014
Incidental musings on Mary Shelley's The Last Man:
I hadn't realised fictional redactions of Byron and Shelley's social circle started quite so early. (Do I want to watch Gothic ? A young Gabriel Byrne as Byron is a somewhat appealing thought.)
Also, it is very weird to read a detailed apocalyptic novel about plague destroying humanity which has not heard of the germ theory of disease.
When did the word "terrorist" change from meaning "person who is terrified" (as it does in this text) to the current meaning ?
mornings: still broken:
Waking up with vague unformed thoughts on the general theme of "if crowdsourcing is such a big thing in the field these days why can't I crowdsource getting out of bed and ready for and in to work?" which unfortunately did not lead to any stunning epiphanies that made everything easier.
Also, when home on my own, I do better logically working out how much food I need to eat, because relying on what instinctively looks right tends to come out on the low side by a third or so.
DNFL says we should have steps this evening, which would be nice as daharyn gets in on the evening train. Also it is pouring rain right now and due to be so until Saturday morning or so.
Last night I watched War of the Worlds: Goliath, which started out promising (animated film set fifteen years after the Wells novel, on the eve of WWI, with Teddy Roosevelt leading an international effort to be prepared for the next Martian war, Nicola Tesla as the brains behind their reverse-engineered tripods and armoured zeppelins, Manfred von Richthofen leading their air force, and a subplot involving the Irish Question that while simplistic did not outright make me want to scream and throw things) but then set most of the interesting stuff aside for dieselpunk slugfests; it felt like it might have been cobbled together from the opening quarter or so of what was originally envisioned as one season of an anime series, and people just gave up on resolving anything other than battles.
June 8 2014
Washing machine delivery failed as expected.
So I watched another season of Red vs. Blue, chatted with daharyn and cenwolfgirl, had a bath in the middle of the day, called my mother, and then unexpectedly fell asleep just after dinner. Woke up again later and, as DNFL and family went away to their cottage, watched the Robocop remake fairly late at night. And then this morning I actually slept reasonably well, watched some soothing media, replaced the broken toilet seat (the bulk of the effort of which went into getting the bolts on the previous one to loosen) and went up to Monkland to pick up mail only to find that this particular thing wants ID with address, which I normally have in my work bag but not in my shopping bag, so I fumed a bit, bought food and came back home.