So many words, so little time....

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Happy 2nd Day of Christmas....

I'm blearily blinking in the cold, hard flourescent light of my office trying to deal with life. The run up to the holidays was such a madhouse this year with work and everything I never really got the "Christmas spirit". Looking at the current schedule, I figure I'll get around to getting in the mood around 12th Night. ;)

Even with all the kerfubble the whole thing went very well, starting with the firing off of the Yule log in the fireplace right before we started opening presents and ending with watching the anime series box set brought by my eldest son.

Someone told me that teenagers don't do the crack-of-dawn present thing. When is that going to happen for me? My 19-year-old younger son was up every 20 minutes all @&$%)@ night, and the whole gang was up by 8am. No rest for the wicked - not even the extremely wicked.

Game-wise we opened up Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, NiGHTS, Need for Speed, and Mass Effect.

On top of the games, my eldest boy got some stuff he needed for deployment, a gift card for some other stuff I know he needs but I didn't know how to buy, and a book on how to be immature. It contains, among many other priceless gems of knowledge, detailed instructions for the making of armpit noises. This was tested out immediately upon opening. ;) I figured it might come in handy in case he starts to forget now that he's grown. My younger son got a new shirt and tie for work, some tools for his new mad scientist workbench, and a cushy new blanket for his bed he wanted.

The girls got these cool hematite magnetic necklace-thingys that you can wrap up into all sorts of bracelets and stuff and they stick together, the cushy new blankets they wanted, and books. A couple new series I know they were looking for and the paper collection of their new favorite webcomic. I was doing a quick check through my security logs after Thanksgiving I found they'd been hammering this poor guy's archive so I went and got them the books. To top them off, the main character wears this extravagant scarf, so I knitted them one to go with them. They were totally suprised. They cheered when they opened it.

The kids got me a Dilbert book and a special edition of "Real Genius". My monster-in-law got me pajamas and a Starbucks giftcard, my mom made me a whole new set of kitchen linens and fridge magnets. And she sent me seven quart jars of her best homemade jam (six of them made it - shipping heavy glass things from Alaska is a chancy business).

There was a whole lot more here from the Grammas and in general. Between my mom, my monster-in-law, and my grandmonster-in-law the kids make a pretty good haul.

We topped off the day by staying up to a really ugly hour of the morning watching an anime series. But we were having fun, and "work tomorrow" has little weight against "they're all growing up way way too fast" at times like this.

We're still not done with the Christmas thing. My BIL and his girlfriend are coming over Saturday to finish off, and the kids are chasing down some of their friends who were gone that they didn't get their gifts to before they left. I've got three more boxes of stuff that has to be finished off and sent.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

For the Record...

Today's XKCD

... I did NOT try this at my son's school.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A few happy thoughts...

Good news is few and far between here, but I can share a couple things.

--There is sun today in the greater Seattle area. I've probably jinxed it by mentioning it, but it is. It's not exactly swimmin' weather, but there are parts of the sky-dome with RGB color values with high numbers in the third pair, and low ones in the other two.

--That coupled with a low volumetric haze and almost no fog of war means I can see the heron down on the river getting his ass kicked by that pair of ducks again. You'd think he'd find someplace else to fish farther from their nest. He's perched on a snag across the way in a serious snit. Reminds me of those Peanuts cartoons when Snoopy's pretending to be a vulture.

--My daughter sent me these links a couple minutes ago: this and this. This is good because a) she got the jokes, b) she's trolling the Whiteboard archives from school so she must have finished her math final with time to spare. Well done, my Padawan.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Pet Woes...

We have a pet labrat. He's a portly old sucker so I let one of my daughter's friends bring her two pet labrats over to play with him so he'll get some exercise one afternoon. A bit later he started getting sick, and we couldn't figure out why. After a month of fooling around with allergy tests and etc it turned out he had caught a rat-specific sort of mite from the others. It doesn't affect humans at all, and the stuff that kills lice does nothing to it.

Not only is he miserable and his skin a wreck, it knocked down his immune system so we're fighting an infection in the bones of his head from a tooth abcess that killed part of the skin of his face and required the vet to shave some bone off his upper jaw that was dying. The worst part is he had to be awake for it because when she tried to sedate him his heart stopped for a little bit -- he's too old.

The last three weeks have been vet visit after vet visit for the injections to kill the mites and twice daily antibiotics. Have you ever tried to wrestle a medicine syringe into a rodent's mouth? He only took it gracefully that first time. That evening and every one since it's Splinter-time and I'm a Foot grunt.

He's doing much better now, and he seems to forgive me for the medicine with little trouble. He's just not going to take it lying down. It probably tastes like crap even with their attempt to flavor it. Needless to say he's on a strict diet, we're looking for other forms of exercise, I've sterilized everything in his cage and the rest of the house as I can just because I can't cope with the concept, and he's not having any more play dates. Hopefully this round of the anti-biotics kill the infection because if they don't she'll have to pull that tooth and that means I get to add clipping his teeth to our usual routine of clipping his claws.

I better get Shredder's armor if that happens.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Disproportionately Funny....

Sometimes people say things that strike you as funnier than they probably should. There's no rhyme or reason to it; you just find yourself randomly chuckling about it for a couple days afterwards.

I ran into this exchange between two anonymous slashdot users today who were discussing modifying game hardware, and I nearly snarfed chai on two computers at once.

>"If you can't install Linux on it or otherwise do with it as you
>please, it's not anywhere near as useful as it should be."

I apply the same litmus test to all decisions in my life, including my choice of girlfriends and pets. That's why I masturbate a lot and have a hamster that runs Ubuntu.

I'm not going anywhere near the first part, but I want a hamster than runs Unbuntu.

Monday, April 30, 2007

Something Old, Something New...

Well, this new voice recognition software is finally getting used for what it is designed for. I've got the new houseape in my arms and I'm writing away busily. Thank goodness the microphone did not pick up the huge working man's belch he just gave me. I've got all this brand new stuff, but so much is still just the same as it's always been.

It’s been two weeks, and the world is settling into its new grooves now that he's finally here. His mother and my son are in the other room talking about their relationship yet a-fargin’-gain, and I'm not sure where this is going to go. A lot of my incomprehension is that I'm very tired, but still. All this nonsense seems very juvenile to me. But it's not my relationship so who am I to say.

He's kind of fussy. We just changed him and I’m feeding him, but I’ve got the audacity to insist that he burp halfway through guzzling his meal. How rude! But I think we've worked it out. There's always a certain amount of learning about each other at the beginning of all of this. Each baby likes their own position, and their own lullabies. We’ll figure it out as we go. He's only been at this whole life-thing for two weeks, after all. He's not sure where his own limbs are much less what he likes.

See, I said I had big news. That adorable mite in the picture is my sort-of grandson, Christopher Myron. His mom and my younger son are engaged. There is a whole lot of complications involved, but when it all boils down to most of the stuff he's going to be my official grandson here soon so I figure why wait. So I stand in loco grandparentis. Or right this second, I stand to get urped on, but that's always a risk with babies.

The girls are in the room tittering about something at the top of their lungs. One of them was on the phone with her ex-boyfriend for quite some time and they’re probably rehashing the whole conversation looking for signs of meaning like priests sifting through the entrails. It's funny to me how much rune-casting and maneuvering is required for just a simple thing as a phone call or even talking in the halls. I guess it's just another symptom of how old I'm really getting.

Sometimes I begin to wonder how I’m going get through all this. I don't now how older parents do this. I'm 38 for crying out loud and I'm about ready to go Elven postal. (Believe it or not this crazy software actually has “Elven postal” as a selection under phrases) I can't imagine starting off with the baby and size of him right now and be staring down the barrel of the next 20 years like so many of my peers are doing. I know I could do it if I had to, but it seems foolish in the extreme.

It’s kind of peaceful, though. This situation, I mean. It certainly brings back a lot of memories. And it takes quite a few of the rough edges off today. I spend a lot of time fumbling around, but this squishy weight on my chest just sort of simplifies a whole lot of stuff right into insignificance. It just sort of boils all the priorities down to brass tacks. It’s starting to show with his mom and my son, too.

All that emo feeling and crap washing around that was so important to them just a couple weeks ago became Priority five. For Priority 1 and 2 you’ve got what he needs and what he wants. Then comes whatever it takes to get those things for him in third place. Then what the parents actually need comes in fourth. You don’t even get to wants and what have you until after all that. And most of the time you just don’t have a way to get that out of the amount of energy and time that there is in a given day. I told them, but it takes having that warm weight in your own arms before you can really understand it, I guess.

It doesn't last long though. They hash out whatever they’ve got their knickers knotted about and her mom has come to pick her and the baby up. The tide of giggling in the other room has risen again, and Mr. Fussy here is doing his damndest to kick off his blanket. That’s life for you.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Zen Influenza...

remember the green skirt girl...
and everywhere be tender of the grass

She looks up from the page and over her shoulder out the window at a noise. Not startled or alarmed. Just wondering. The blinds lid the weeping window's eye but the rain is over. Clear thin tracks and lowered gray brows beyond are all that remain. The girls are out with a flock of their friends under the carport tossing a hackey-sack and discussing lipgloss. The sound had been the particular grainy slap the beans inside make when it hits the steel uprights, and the teasing laughter that had followed that miss.

Turning back and shifting on the couch to ease the neck-crick, she looks down again. Where were we?

remember the green skirt girl...
and everywhere be tender of the grass

The guys thunder in the front door, soaked to the bone and dripping mud and bravado. They'd been out playing football with their buddies and somewhere there's a patch of lawn that is being beaten into this spring's battlefield. At her comment about the mess they're making they laugh and step back onto the doormat. Arrangements are made to go out again, and then back to the page for just a flicker.

It's not making any sense. The words lie on the page in their ordered ranks and come readily to her beck and call, but for some reason once they get to their destination they are blunted. Maybe they're just tired from the journey from page to eye, or maybe the caucaphony of complaints from the rest of the body are drowning out the sense. She closes her eyes. Maybe if she just thinks about a line at a time it'll work.

remember the green skirt girl...
and everywhere be tender of the grass

The girls chatter and squelch their way off to the basketball court, and now the computer fans chanting their one-note koans are the only sound. A sniffle and a sneeze curl the body momentarily, but then they are gone almost like they were tossed into the wastebasket with the tissue. The motions are automatic now from many repetitions. She hardly notices anymore.

There is work that should be done. The test scripts are done running - the excuse for lying idle is gone. The dryer is done and is waiting to have this mouthful of it's daily meal of jeans and socks taken out. It would be easy to just pull the covers up over the head and let them wait. A half-hearted negotiation with her sense of duty later she gets up and deals with the laundry.

The words still ring in her head. "Do the girls have a green skirt?" she wonders aloud as she chases that last fractious sock around in the dryer's drum.

Monday, March 19, 2007

The trouble with America is that there are far too many wide-open spaces surrounded by teeth. -- Charles Luckman

Sorry - that's just a thought to hold you for just a couple more days. Boy, do I have news for you!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Wednesday and Eric, sitting in a tree.... Kay - eye - summtin'- summtin'....

If you're an afficiando of Web Comics and their critique, you might have heard of Websnark and it's author Eric Burns. He also writes for a couple other webcomics publications.

He proposed to his long-time co-writer Wednesday White here with the help of a few friends.

(And she said yes. Well, first she said, "Duh!", but then she amended to the more formal "Yes.")

Congratulations to you both. May you live as long as you love and love as long as you live!