Tuesday, July 31, 2012

My Big Accomplishment For The Month

The other day, playing computer Scrabble, I made a word that was worth 92 points. Ninety-two. I just want that preserved for posterity.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Too Much Bad News

Last month, we lost Caroline John, who played Liz Shaw on Doctor Who. A few days ago, it was Mary Tamm, the first Romana. Today, I've heard that Jonathan Hardy, who was the voice of Rygel on Farscape has died. That last one is particularly shocking to me; I've become sadly used to losing fondly-remembered Doctor Who actors in recent years, but Farscape is another matter. Surely anyone who could play someone as stubbornly survival-oriented as Rygel must live forever? Surely?

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Various Random Thoughts About Trivial Stuff In My Life

Numbered for no particular reason and presented in no particular order:

1. I have bought no books this month. None. This is a spectacular achievement for me, you know, an unprecedented triumph of self-control. And even so I've still acquired more than I've read, or will read before the month is out, mainly because I went so far off the rails with my book quota last month that I apparently decided, "Screw it, I might as well order a bunch more!" All of which, of course, showed up this month, along with a couple of others that got back-ordered a while ago. Still, it's not too bad, right? At least I'm doing something to counter the excesses of last month, rather than adding to the problem. At least the book pile isn't going to get any worse, right? Well, yes, I was thinking that. And then, while I was leaving work on Friday morning, current book in hand, I ran into a guy I know having a pre-work cigarette break outside. "Hey," he said, "you like books?" Um... yes? Turns out his sister is moving and left behind "a huge box of books" she told him to give away, and did I want it? Or want to pick through it? Come on, how could I say no?! I could not stop laughing all the way home. Where I then received a visit from an old friend who was passing through town. (Hello, Captain C!) And, as a belated birthday present... he brought books. I'm telling you, it's almost enough to make me believe in a cosmic power. A cosmic power that wants me to die with 500 volumes on the To-Read Pile.

2. I'm in the middle of two weeks of night shifts. I was actually quite happy about this prospect. Hey, two weeks without having to shift my schedule! Yay, brief period of regular sleeping patterns! Except that, as often happens when I'm on night shifts, I've had a couple of days when I woke up way, way too early, could not get back to sleep, and had a hell of a bad time trying to stay awake at work all night. You know what unexpectedly helped? I was reading astronaut Michael Collins' Carrying the Fire on one of those bad days, specifically the part in which he talks about his first night in a Gemini capsule, when he slept like crap. I cannot say how much this sort of thing cheers me up. I may have gotten way, way too little sleep, but at least I didn't then have to get up and navigate a spacecraft. (See? There are so many reasons why books are good!)

3. Aforementioned friend -- howdy again, Captain! -- mentioned the fact that I seldom seem to talk about what I'm watching on TV or DVD here anymore, so I figured I'd rectify that. Current DVD watching is Fullmetal Alchemist, which, like many other things, I added to the Netflix queue so long ago that by the time it reached the top, I honestly could not remember why I put it there or who recommended it to me. It's... interesting. Part silly, part really messed-up and dark, and part just plain WTFish. Or, in other words, it's anime. I am 12 episodes in now, and I'm a little alarmed by how much it's growing on me.

4. I bought a computer Scrabble game. Now I cannot stop playing computer Scrabble. Send help.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Always More Kitty Pics!

Here's a rather pretty picture of Newt lying on my sister's fireplace mantel:

(Aww, I kind of miss her.)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Random Links Are Here Again

Apparently it's been a while since I've done this, because most of these have been sitting around since May.

Welcome to Life: the singularity, ruined by lawyers: Now, this is an afterlife I can believe in. Which is a terrifying thought.

Cat Fur, Cat Fur Everywhere: Yet another reason why I just couldn't handle four cats.

Dr. Who Meets Metal: A rockin' metal version of the Who theme, with bonus extras.

And, along similar lines, Vashta Nerada [Doctor Who Theme] by Traffic Experiment - Official Music Video : The Doctor Who theme if it were done by Pink Floyd. Talk about two great tastes!

Underground New York Public Library: Photographs of people reading on the New York subway system. For some reason, I find this utterly compelling. Once I start scrolling, I just can't stop.

Great Beyond: Observatory is 'revolutional leap': An 11-minute MSNBC feature on the ALMA radio telescope array. It's really wonderful to see news reporting that's so enthusiastic about science.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Properly Functioning Kitty

Just had Happiness back to the vet to have her thyroid levels checked again. Turns out they're dead in the normal range, so the low dose of medicine she's taking seems to be doing the job beautifully. Also, she's gained over half a pound since the last time I had her in, which may not sound like much, but, y'know, when you're that small...

Anyway, yay for good news! It's nice to know that something is working properly around here.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Is Your Refrigerator Running?

Gaah, it seems like the last week or so has been nothing but a cavalcade of technological problems, at home, at work, everywhere. The latest involves my refrigerator. Here's a tip for you: if you open your refrigerator and find yourself thinking, "Huh, usually the air that hits my face when I do this feels a lot colder," do not just shrug, dial the temperature button up, and tell yourself it's probably fine, or one day you'll wake up in the morning and find yourself pouring something chunky into your breakfast cereal. Sigh. Well, it's fixed now, anyway. Hopefully all the milk I drank before it got to the chunky stage isn't currently in the process of killing me.

Friday, July 13, 2012


A somewhat blurry but adorable picture of Newt attacking my sister's telephone headset:

That's Going To Be Stuck In My Head All Day.

Also, someone linked me to this video, and I felt the need to inflict it on the rest of you. Because it is not the sort of thing one should experience alone.

Another Turn Around The Sun

Happy birthday to me! I am 41 today. I must admit, I like not being 40 anymore, even though, of course, that is completely irrational. I mean, it's not like I'm getting younger. But such is the psychological power of big, round numbers, I guess.

It's also a Friday the 13th! And I am living proof that triskaidecaphobia is nonsense. I turned thirteen on a Friday the thirteenth. Also, my full name has exactly thirteen letters. If there were anything to the superstition, I would never have lived to adulthood.

Thursday, July 12, 2012


Well, that was a day from hell. Can I have another vacation now? Please?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

This Again

Current clothes: Black Farscape t-shirt with "...share the wonders I've seen" on the front and a "tenth anniversary tour" list of planets on the back. Tan shorts. Black socks.

Current mood: Not bad. Enjoying my day off. Actually, it's my third (and last) day off this week, but I spent most of Monday sleeping, trying to make the transition from nights to days, and yesterday I did some annoying yard work and was just too tired to do much else afterward. So today is my relaxation day.

Current music: Rush's Clockwork Angels. Because I finally got my hands on a copy.

Current annoyance: My back hurts a little after aforementioned annoying yard work.

Current thing: I'm not sure I have a current thing. Trying not to buy any books this month, maybe. So far, so good, except for the ones I ordered last month that have been coming in the mail.

Current desktop picture: Still the Grand Canyon in moonlight.

Current book: I've just started Doc by Mary Doria Russell, about which I've heard good things.

Current song in head: Hmm, doesn't seem to be anything at the moment. Give it an hour or so, though, and I'm sure something will pop up.

Current DVD in player: Disc 1 of season 5 of Burn Notice. Man, I missed Burn Notice. I ought to see if I can catch up and start watching it when it's actually on, maybe.

Current refreshment: Lemon-mint tea.

Current worry: Eh, all my current worries are really just stupid, vague insecurities. Screw 'em.

Current thought: I don't want to go to work tomorrow! But today is nice. I should enjoy what's left of it. I think I'm going to read some more, then eat pot roast and watch Burn Notice.

Friday, July 06, 2012

Newt News II

Since it's probably time for another update. (What, you didn't think that just because I got rid of the kitty, I'd stop talking about her, did you? Ha! No, I will continue to bore you all with cat talk forever. Bwahahaha! Ahem.)

Anyway, my sister did get moved into her new place last week. She says the cat was pretty freaked out at first -- understandably enough -- and went back to hiding in her carrier for a while, but was eventually induced to come out for skritches and petting. There was a bad moment, apparently, where my sister decided it would be a good idea to pick the kitty up and show her where her litter box had been moved to. I'm told there was some blood loss. Oops. But they eventually forgave each other, and now Newt is out and about, exploring the new house and having fun hiding behind boxes and stalking invisible prey.

Maybe at some point I will get some pictures.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Thunderbolts and Lightning

Well, hello there, monsoon season! Nice to see you again! But some of that lightning was just a little close for comfort. You want to dial it back a notch, please?

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Ah, Independence!

Happy 4th of July to all, and happy Independence Day to my fellow Americans! Have fun, and try not to set anything on fire.

I have no particular plans today, myself, other than doing a whole lot of not working after a rather long week, but maybe I'll pop my head out and watch some of the fireworks tonight.

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Water + Gravity = Pretty!

For no particular reason other than that I finally remembered to download it off my phone, here's a photo of a waterfall I took in Oregon: