Monday, February 28, 2011

I Now Have Claw Marks In Sensitive Places.

Here's a good thing not to do: don't put on a pair of very thin drawstring pajama pants, leave the drawstring dangling down, and stand directly in front of a playful six-month-old kitten. Ow. Well, at least I am feeling very lucky to be female.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Sad News

Sad enough that I couldn't quite bring myself to blog about it last night. But...

Goodbye, Nicholas Courtney. Courtney's character of Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart -- the Brigadier to fans -- was one of the most enduringly wonderful parts of Doctor Who, and will continue to be for as long as the show is watched and remembered. But the man who brought him to us will be very deeply missed.

Monday, February 21, 2011

My Name Is Betty, And I Am A Biblioholic.

Thanks to the latest round of bookcase purchasing and assembly, there are now empty bookshelves in my dining room. Almost eight of them. Which looks weird. Weird, and kind of wrong. And while part of my brain is contemplating them in quiet satisfaction, thinking, "There, that should do me for the next few years, at least as far as the fiction goes!", some other, more primal part keeps shouting, "OMG, empty shelves! Must fill them up! Must read faster!"

Well. At least it's not the worst possible obsession to have. Right?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Home Phone

I finally got around to calling the phone company and asking them to come out and install a phone jack in my living room, so that a) I can actually have a phone in the living room, which is far and away the most convenient place to keep one, and b) I can put a bookcase in front of the phone jack I'm using now, because that's a much better place for a bookcase than a phone.

They said someone would be here between noon and 5 PM today. It is now 4:40. Any bets on whether they're actually going to show?

[ETA: Five o'clock sharp, and they just called to say they're on their way. OK, whatever...]

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Who's A Good Dog, Then?

Hey, it's been ages since I've done a "Which Doctor Who character are you?" quiz! So:

You are K9
You are K9
Take The Doctor Who Personality Test and Horoscope today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Personality Test Generator.

You are an absolute know it all. You take everything too literally. You are great with technology and a master at chess. You are extremely loyal and would sacrifice yourself to save your friends. You are the go-to person in every situation. You have a tough time negociating terrain and are always the loudest one in the room, even when you are not talking. And you have a laser blaster in you nose. You will end up being outdated and thrown in the trunk of a car until you are completely rusted.

Except, really, I suck at chess.

Don't Talk To Me About Life.

Cats woke me up at four o'clock in the fucking morning. Could not get back to sleep. Now have to work annoying day shift.

Send chocolate.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bookshelves, And Kitten, In Progress

Well, Mickey has just passed a very important milestone in any cat's development: his first time "helping" a human assemble furniture. "Ooh, look, nails! I wonder what these do!"

Are We Sure That Wasn't Pluto?

My god, but the weather today is astonishingly gorgeous. I'm having trouble believing that this is still the same planet I was on two weeks ago.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Another Installment Of "What Betty's Watching"

Most recently acquired from Netflix: Max Headroom, a show I vaguely remember watching an episode or two of back when it aired, but which somehow didn't seem especially appealing to me at the time, I think because I thought the digitized talking head looked silly. I've just watched the first episode, and I feel like I ought to talk about the social satire (which was decent, though not quite as sharp as I expected), or the rather charmingly simple 80s computer effects. Or even my reluctant admission that while I deplore the steady increase in commercial lengths and the resulting shrinking of actual storytelling time -- a particularly appropriate complaint when discussing this show -- I have to admit that watching stuff like this from a couple of decades ago does make me realize how much better paced most shows are now. But, honestly, my main thought while watching this was just, "Wow, Matt Frewer looks so young!"

I Heart Outer Space

I have to say, I am not a huge fan of Valentine's Day. But I am in love with the cosmos, so I will link to this: Happy cosmic Valentine’s Day!. Aww! The universe is full of love! Or at least full of random things that look like other things.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

My Parents Used To Do The Same Thing With Us And The Dog.

Here's another way you can tell when you've got too many cats: I've started calling them by the wrong names, especially when I want to yell at them. I keep yelling "Vir!" at Mickey, and "Mickey!" at Vir. Possibly because those are the two who get yelled at most, but the fact that they're close to the same color no doubt adds to the confusion in my brain. I'm thinking maybe I ought to dye one of them pink. (Or possibly just accept the fact that this really is too many cats, which may well yet happen.)

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

And Here I Thought The Last Batch Would Last A While

I've just had to order some new bookshelves. Again. I am living in fear of the day when I run out of places to put them.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Currently, I Am Still Bitching About My Cats.

Current clothes: Black jeans. Black and red sweater. White socks.

Current mood: A little bit stressy.

Current music: Nothing much. Well, I've been listening to Pandora on my phone occasionally. It's been kind of heavy on the Pink Floyd.

Current annoyance: Cats! Aaargh! Mickey's still spending more time shut up in his room than he is out of it, which I feel kind of terrible about, but I can not leave him alone with Happiness. This morning, I let him out for half an hour, keeping a close eye on him the whole time, then left him alone for a minute and a half while I went to take a dump, and when I came out, he and Happiness were being all confrontational, and before I could grab the squirt bottle, he started chasing her and got her cornered under the utility sink. This sort of thing just keeps happening. I'm really, really hoping things get better now that he's neutered, and I know that it might take a while, but my optimism levels keep fluctuating. He might very well end up having to go live with my mother. And in the meantime, it's difficult to get anything done, with having to watch him all the time. It's like having a goddamned toddler. Fortunately, as with toddlers, he's just too cute and lovable to kill.

Current thing: Trying to keep warm and sane and to prevent the cats from killing each other. Or from killing them myself.

Current desktop picture: This image of my new current favorite character, thanks to last month's Supernatural marathon. Although the full size version apparently no longer exists.

Current book: Just finished Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. Next up is The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking.

Current song in head: "Skullcrusher Mountain" by Jonathan Coulton. I'm trying not to read anything into that.

Current DVD in player: The last disc of Deep Space 9 season 3.

Current refreshment: Nothing. But I may need more tea. Tea is good for stress, and will help keep me sane.

Current worry: That I will have to face the fact that four cats is too damned many cats.

Current thought: Hmm. The kitten is being very quiet. I should check on him. Again.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Meowing Soprano

Mickey is back from his trip to the vet and doing well! He seems happy to be home, and not to hold his recent ordeal against me. Also, he's very cute. I sometimes forget that when he's being a pain in the ass, but when he's been gone for a day, suddenly it's blindingly obvious.

While he was there, I also had them trim his claws, so that if he doesn't stop fighting, at least maybe he'll do less damage. Those suckers were sharp.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Can't Stop Talking About The Weather

With this weather, we may have hardly known what hit us, but here it is made visible: Snowpocalypse 2011 from space!. You can see me there in New Mexico, smiling indulgently at the rest of the country freaking out, right up until we get coated with a very dramatic WHOOSH! Guess that showed us.

It's A Gas, Gas, Gas. Or, Um, Not.

Oh, god. Apparently the reason I'm having problems with my heaters is because the entire state is running out of natural gas.

Can I take that trip to Hawaii now?

[ETA: My heat is doing somewhat better now. The second wall heater is actually staying lit. On the other hand, I just got an e-mail from work saying their heat wasn't working right. You know, work. That place I have to be until midnight. Sigh.]

[ETA again: Also, I neglected to mention that I did get Mickey in to the vet for his neutering. They're keeping him overnight, since I'm working all evening, so at least it's their responsibility and not mine to keep him from freezing to death tonight.]

Eleven Degrees Below Zero! Fahrenheit!

Oh. My. God. I do not have clothing warm enough for this weather. The ancient wall heater in my living room apparently could not cope with having to stay on continuously all night just to keep the house livable and now appears to be all but dead. I almost couldn't get my car to start. And I had to go inside for a while midway through knocking the snow off of it because the pain in my fingers was becoming unbearable.

What the hell happened to sunny New Mexico?!

Wednesday, February 02, 2011


So, we ended up with over 3 inches of snow, with possibly more on the way. This may be about the biggest snowstorm I've ever seen here -- yes, you folks in the Northeast may laugh with bitter derision now -- and for once, unthinkably, it probably won't all have melted by the end of the day. It's still cold, and it's going to get colder. They're calling for record low temperatures tonight.

Naturally, everything here is shut down. The organization I work for is on Emergency Status, meaning people don't have to come in, or get extra pay if they do. That doesn't necessarily always mean that I don't need to come in, as astronomy is very much a "the show must go on" kind of endeavor, and someone's got to point the telescopes. But with the weather this bad across this much of the country, it's difficult to do much observing, so even we are pretty much shut down. The boss gave me the option of coming in if I want to, but there's not going to be anything to do.

Unfortunately, though, I don't get the emergency shutdown time -- or not much of it -- because that only applies during normal working hours. Because that's all anyone works, right? Or people who don't don't count, or something. But any hours after 5:30 that I'm not there, I either have to make up somehow, or take out of my own vacation time. Which is massively, massively dickish of them, especially as I would have zero problem getting in right now, but walking home at midnight in record-breaking low temperatures sounds like a really stupid idea. I might be willing to try driving on the snow-covered road, maybe even coming home in the dark, except that they close off the direct route from my work to my house at night for "security reasons," and you have to circumnavigate the entire campus if you're driving. Which involves either going up a very steep hill, or threading your way through narrow, winding driveways between parking lots. The last time I tried that in icy conditions, I ran over a curb, bent the crap out of my rim, and had the tire literally fall off my car two days later. No thank you. Jerks. I'm just glad I still have plenty of vacation time.

And now, of course, I'm worried about whether I'm going to be able to get Mickey in for his operation in the morning. If it's still this bad, the vet might not even be open. Stupid snow.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Eek! Weather!

Wow. That's... kind of a lot of snow.

Dialing Down The Testosterone

All right, so, I've made Mickey an appointment for his little snip-snip operation on Thursday. Here's hoping this provides the attitude adjustment he needs, because he's still picking fights with Happiness, and even his play-fighting with Nova has started getting a little aggressive for comfort. Hell, he occasionally looks like he's covertly plotting Vir's overthrow as King Cat. If ever there was a case of having too much balls for your own good...