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27 March 2017 21:15
kaffyr: (Tired of typesetting)
[personal profile] kaffyr
This Is Me Today


 photo buffalo_zpse5f92fdf.gif


I'm sure I'll be a nicer mammal tomorrow.  

Dept. of Sunday

26 March 2017 21:50
kaffyr: (Porco Rosso friends)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Things I Learned This Weekend

1. I'm really not Buddhist, not in the least. I tried to read a book I picked up at the library, which had been recommended by a friend. It was written by a Buddhist nun, and it was about how to try to approach, or in some way deal with, difficult times. It's something I need to learn how to do, so I wanted to read this book, this very slim little book.

I managed about five pages of it and ended up yelling at the book. There was no way I was going to make it to the end, slim or not. The language made me roll my eyes, I kept arguing with individual sentences. Individual sentences, people; I was arguing with words on a page.

BB, who has a much more Buddhist nature than I have had read a bit of the book; when I told him the book made me extremely angry (and that's the thing I'm trying to deal with), he sighed and said "This isn't the book I'd have suggested for you to read." He was right.

And more generally, I was reminded that I'm not Buddhist in the least, as I said. I know that the dark is part of this world; I know that death is part of this world, but I'll be goddamned if I have to like it, or accept it.  I'm with Dylan Thomas; I'll rage against the dying of the light.

2. I was reminded, once again, of how much I love BB. 


Dept. of A Good Saturday

25 March 2017 21:40
kaffyr: Animation of a Ghibli film scene, water rolling into shore. (Anoesis)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Today I Made Pumpkin Pie

And I successfully used up some leftovers in the fridge to make a decent fettuccine dish for supper. These are both successes. And I realized that something I thought I had to get done in three days was actually something I don't have to get done for 9 days. That's lagniappe. 

I also listened to a lot of Joe Hisaishi music. And now I'm going to bed, knowing I don't have to get up early in the morning. That's the best part. 

No, perhaps tomorrow will be the best part. 
 

Dept. of Bedtime

23 March 2017 21:41
kaffyr: Hayao's realistic Pompoko raccoons yawn in our faces (Pompoko yawns)
[personal profile] kaffyr
 Not A Bad Day ...


... but an exhausting one. Goodnight all.

Dept. of Mittwoch

22 March 2017 20:52
kaffyr: (Maia airships court)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Wednesday Observations

1)  I was driving home this afternoon, and I noticed one of those little bobbing-head dogs in the rear window of the car in front of me. Then I realized it was a real dog. A little mop dog, with a little sweater-thing on, poor thing. It was somewhat bigger than the bobbing-head toys, but not that much. His or her head wasn't bobbing. The little thing had its head on its paws, and it looked as if it wanted to be somewhere else. Or perhaps it was just enjoying the sun. I'd like that to be the case. 

2) I'm trying to figure out a way to feed Alex canned pumpkin. All the veterinary advice (from his vet and from Teh Intarwebz) on what might be his particular problem states that feeding a cat canned pumpkin provides much needed fibre and - wait, what? 

Yeah, send me the addresses of cats who actually willingly will eat mashed up vegetable gourds, and I'll show you ... nothing, because, no, there are no cats - No. Cats. Ever. - who will willingly eat pumpkin. I am as sure of this as I am of my own soul. I like pumpkin. I really like pumpkin. But I am not a cat. My cat is a cat. He looked at me with as much disdain as a cat can muster when presented with this. And cats do disdain very well. He actually moved backward to get away from the pumpkin. And, asyouknowbob, cats find it very hard to back up. "Back up" is not in their lexicon. 

Except when they are presented with mashed pumpkin. 

We already know he hates all the various petromalt-type goos that cats are supposed to love. Hah. He eyes that with the same extreme distaste with which he eyed pumpkin. Possibly because we've taken to rubbing the goo on his paws and/or muzzle in a desperate attempt to get it into him by forcing him to clean himself ....

Maybe if I put catnip in the pumpkin?

3) To all those in the world today dealing with war or terror attacks, from Syria to London - my thoughts are with you. 

Dept. of Pain

21 March 2017 21:46
kaffyr: Hayao's realistic Pompoko raccoons yawn in our faces (Pompoko yawns)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Checklist

Back hurts. Yup.
Mouth hurts. Yup.
Head hurts. Yup. 
Going to bed?
Yup.
watervole: (Default)
[personal profile] watervole
 I've just finished this book.  It only cost a few pounds for the Kindle version, so it was worth what I paid for it, but I didn't enjoy it enough to buy the next in the series.

It's an urban fantasy featuring Dina, who is an innkeeper.   Innkeeper in her case means that she has a symbiotic relationship with a building that is semi-intelligent, can modify its shape, produce defensive weapons and various other tricks besides.

The task of an innkeeper is to provide a safe place for aliens visiting Earth.

Rather disappointingly (from my viewpoint) the aliens to date include vampires and werewolves.   I must admit that I've had too many vampires and werewolves and I get bored with attempts to use bad pseudo-science to make them believable.  I cannot think of any kind of twist on genetic engineering that will convince me a werewolf can gain large amounts of mass when it changes form.

The inn suffers from the same problem.  I love the idea, but the claim that it is advanced science that can't be distinguished from magic fails to convince me.

I'd rather have real science or pure magic.  One masquerading as the other just annoys me.

On the plus side, the novel is very well written with excellent descriptive text.  The characters are engaging (I particularly liked the mass murderer using the inn as a safe place.  Not a character I would ever want to meet, but well and entertainingly written)

If the book had had original aliens I'd probably have enjoyed it more.  However, what is a minus for me may well be a plus for others.

If you like your werewolves strong and with buckets of sex appeal and your vampires to be clannish, scheming and to have complex, devious politics, then I recommend 'Clean Sweep; to you.

Dept. of Sunday

19 March 2017 18:29
kaffyr: (Maia airships court)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Observing the Oncoming Storm Week

I'm almost afraid to say this, kinehora, but I'm feeling better about myself than I did at the end of last week. That took working some self-imposed non-paid work-related overtime this weekend (about 11-12 hours over two days), which has caused BB to side-eye me a bit, but ultimately he understood that, if it took that to stop me beating myself up about the work situation, then it was - barely - worth it. As a union rep, I should be reading myself the riot act, but mental and emotional self-care trumps the contract - something I wouldn't tell many of my younger colleagues, who routinely let themselves be coerced into working hours and hours without putting in for the OT. They're getting coerced, though, so I have to stand behind them and give them the strength to resist doing that. What I'm doing is, as I've said, quiet self-care. 

Yeah, sure, whatever, dude. So long as you believe it.  

We're having corned beef and cabbage tonight, two days too late, if one believes strictly in holiday-centric menus. I used to dislike boiled cabbage with a great and adolescent hate. As I've gotten older, I've discovered that I like it every so often. Today is "every so often."  

So tonight I'll spend a little time with BB and go to bed early so that I can get up and take a running leap at the week. Wish me luck - and may your week be a good one!

kaffyr: (See the Sky)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Brown Eyed Handsome Man

He was rock and roll. 


Hail, hail, rock and roll. Heaven just got a lot cooler. 

Here's a raw and live version of his first hit. I could just erase everything I wrote about his performances and point you to this.




Here's a reminder that his genius wasn't just in ramped up rhythms. Much as I love almost everything of his that I've heard. This is probably my favorite Chuck Berry song.



And this? This is the Brown Eyed Handsome Man




Dept. of Saturday

18 March 2017 11:13
kaffyr: (Bruce doubts that)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Wish Me Luck

In an effort to make Monday less apt to be the first through ninth circles of Hell, I'm doing some workday work on Saturday. I'm giving myself two hours to get some reasonable things done, (checking backgrounds on candidates, uploading a police blotter, sending emails with questions to the candidates I haven't reached yet, which probably means having to hunt up emails, and telling people they can call me on Sunday), and then I"m going to tell myself to relax again.

And, hey, I may even have something to say beyond this, later today. We'll see.  

recently I have discovered

17 March 2017 23:03
cheyinka: A Blargg (a lava crocodile) emerging from lava. (blargg)
[personal profile] cheyinka

Sometimes I follow links to news articles and discover they're not recent - some algorithm suggested them, but because they're similar, not because they're new. Recently I have discovered that I can't even bring myself to read political stories - candidate x said this, politician elected in 2014 did that, columnist opines etc - published before election day 2016. It's starting to creep into stories about the US in general that are sufficiently before election day 2016. It's as if that day - even though nothing dreadful had yet happened - was the day that the world went sideways, and the only thing reading about the good universe Before would do is make me sad.

It feels like that creature has been ruining the country for years, but its nomination was still an unlikely joke, a year ago today. (I voted in the Republican primary in my state because I thought there was a chance of denying it the nomination.) Certainly its presidency seems to be ruining my ability, or perhaps just my desire, to read about the past.

what do I do now

Dept. of Just Keep Swimming

17 March 2017 21:31
kaffyr: Doc Yewl from Defiance (yewlyay)
[personal profile] kaffyr
I Got to 15 Days ...

... and then the week that truly was from hell hit me. Last night I lost the last of my spoons. I went to bed without having posted anything. 

Still, I have been better at posting this month than I've been for quite some time. And, hey, I'm getting back up on the bicycle, and posting now, amn't I? Which, when I put it that way, sounds extremely defensive, but then I've been feeling rather defensive for the past 48 or so hours. 

I'm not going to go into all the awfulness of Wednesday through today, at least not today. And certainly, my stress is ongoing, as is the difficult time at work. But tonight, my beloved took me out to our favorite sushi place, and it was so relaxing just to sit and talk with him, drink miso soup and eat chirashi and mackerel jaw, that I don't want to think about anything else.  (BB actually pointed out, when I said that, that it's the only one we go to, but that's not completely true and anyway, even if we did go out to other sushi places, this is the one I think I'd like the most.)'

It's Friday, and I am home, and I'm going to watch something enjoyable with BB, and then I'm going to go to bed and cuddle with him, put my head on his chest, and try to unknot my stomach. 


Book prices on Amazon

17 March 2017 18:21

Books

16 March 2017 14:15
watervole: (Default)
[personal profile] watervole
 As I'm recovering from the winter's asthma  and it's after effects   (fog traps air pollution and there is more pollution in winter due to wood fires, high air pressure, etc.  Asthma means a course of steroids.  Steroids lead to muscle loss. Hypermobility combined with muscle loss means that I inevitably injure some muscles while trying to regain muscle strength.  Muscle injury leads to chest pain, etc.)  the brain cells are returning and I'm reading more books.

I seem to be buying a lot of books recommended by or written by friends. 

Currently in the reading queue are: Clean Sweep by  Illona Andrews (recc'd by  ([personal profile] feng_shui_house), Bride of the Rat God by Barbara Hambley, (might have been http://sallymn.livejournal.com/ ), Thomas the Rhymer by Ellen Kushner (think that was a friend of a friend) and The Crimson Outlaw by Alex Beecroft.  There are some other recs that I need to go back to now I'm in a better state of mind.

Just completed 'Remnant Population' by Elizabeth Moon.  She writes excellent Space Combat novels, but this particular book is very different in nature.  It's the slow-paced story of an elderly woman who chooses to stay behind when her colony is evacuated to another world.  She's a very believable protagonist.  Aches and pains, a love of gardening and a good touch of bloody-mindedness.

Being on her own allows her to do as she wants and to throw off some of the social conventions that have irked her.   She can value herself on her own merits, rather than being subject to the whims and opinions of others.

It's also an alien first-contact story with a twist that I love (even while conceding it to be improbable)

I've read this book before, and I'm sure I
 will read it again.


Oswin and Daffodils

16 March 2017 09:48
watervole: (Default)
[personal profile] watervole
 Children have wonderful imaginations - unfettered by knowledge of what is possible.

Oswin (my granddaughter) will be three in April.  As yesterday had real sunshine, we spend quite a bit of time in the garden.  She's fallen in love with daffodils, especially the big yellow 'King Alfred' ones in my back lawn.   She interacts with her favourite flower as though it's a person.  She talks to it, turns its head so it can see what is happening elsewhere and keeps popping back into the garden to see it again.

After the stalk got bent through too much tlc, we snipped it with a pair of scissors and put it in a vase "so it could have a drink".  The vase was placed on the kitchen table next to some cress she is growing, so they could keep each other company.

Later in the day, she was pretending to be a daffodil.  As far as I could tell, the daffodil did exactly what little girls do, but who am I to argue!

Oswin takes a real delight in life -when we go for walks, we often run and jump on all the water meters, manhole covers, etc, in the pavement.  She's very good. I can trust her not to go onto the road without waiting for me to say it's safe.  We've drilled her very carefully in that one.

BTW, if anyone wants book recommendation for small children, her current favourite is the delightful 'Owl Babies', which combines realism with a lovely little story and a touch of humour.  

By realism, I mean that the illustrations actually look like owls and the owls do things that real owls do.

Dept. of Weariness

14 March 2017 21:53
kaffyr: The TARDIS says hello (Default)
[personal profile] kaffyr
Hello World, Happy (End of) Pi Day. I'm Going to Bed.

Because I need to do a lot of work tomorrow, I did a lot of work today, I did even more work yesterday, and I feel like my brain is slowly turning to oatmeal. 

Our kitty Alex is doing significantly better, though. Now, If he'd just like some of the stuff we need him to eat, that would be cool. 

March 2017

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