eruthros: llamas! (llamas)
If I don't post things, then they just build up and build up in semagic until it seems insurmountable. Today I have decided to say "fuck that" to that problem, so here are ... a bunch of misc and unrelated things, some of which have been in semagic for months.

1. We made lots of awesome food for American Thanksgiving which was like three weeks ago now, but this text has been sitting here for most of those weeks so I'm posting it anyway. I might forget how to make these tasty brussels sprouts by next fall! More details about the recipes under the cut to spare you guys )

2. I'm currently going to PT threeish days a week for hand and wrist and knee and ankle and etc joint pain, and I still have partly immobilized hands. It makes me cranky and anxious, especially because nobody seems to know what's wrong, and why this problem is worse than the previous ones. Blather about doctors )

3. Some things I forgot about when I was doing yuletide nominations, so now I'm putting them here for next year )

3a. It is a sad state of affairs when your yuletide story notes are long enough to be posted to the archive. *pokes at file* Now, if only I had a story...

4. Some random things I have learned from kink_bingo )

4a. This isn't a random thing that I learned from [community profile] kink_bingo, it's a true story from planning last year that I've always meant to post so I won't someday forget it )

5. I want a firefox extension, and I can't find it! Here's what bugs me )

THERE. Now I have a completely blank update field. And I'll add some stuff from today to make sure it stays that way:

6. This Penny Arcade strip pretty much explains the way I feel when people say things like "you're just watching it to hate it."

7. Oh my god, lj, seriously? You're seriously going to make gender a mandatory field and make male and female the only options within that field? Seriously? I just. Fuck that shit. I can't put words to my RAGE.

*facepalm*

Mar. 26th, 2008 12:37 pm
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
You guys? It's nearly 1 pm and I just realized that today's my birthday. Not on my own, either. When my mom wished me happy birthday. No, really. I was like "happy birthday? But it's not my ... oh."

Um. I'm totally out of it. I seriously thought today was the 25th. MAN. I should've had a better breakfast! Instead of doing boring reading!

Also: I clearly need a facepalm icon, because when I type *f in the lj subject field it autofills the rest in by now.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
As with all thanksgivings, I learned some important lessons:

1. Never make pumpkin pie from the recipe on the back of the can of organic pumpkin, ESPECIALLY if you're planning to replace the dairy-milk with almond-milk. [livejournal.com profile] graycastle and I had to make a second pumpkin pie, because the first one a) lied about the size of pan it would fill and we had to double the recipe at the last minute b) under-sugared and c) really, really, REALLY under-spiced, which I mostly fixed, but.

2. The most awesome mashed potatoes in the world are made by using some of your extra-left-over heavy cream instead of milk. (No, seriously: yukon gold potatoes, cut up, boiled with skins in salt water. Take out. Add butter and heavy cream. Mash with a fork. Nom nom nom.)

2a. I will now be keeping a small container of heavy cream in the fridge. See, I use essentially no real dairy, and don't drink it, so even the smallest container of milk will go bad before I bake with it. But heavy cream comes in really small containers, and I can bake with it, make mashed potatoes, whip it as cream, or offer it to people for ... really, really rich coffee or tea. (I usually have to do that "um, your choices are almond or soy milk" thing.)

3. Green Star Co-op doesn't carry chicken or turkey breasts, even during the holidays. Geez, Green Star -- you carry beef. Is chicken too much to ask?

4. There is only one complete Mathnet series available on youtube. This distresses me. What if I suddenly want to watch the episode with the missing baseball and the air-lifted house? I ask you.

5. Even though I think, every time, that Mollie Katzen must be joking when she tells me to grease the spring-form pan and then line the bottom with parchment paper (before putting the pan together, which makes the assembly of the pan a total pain) when making apple-pear crostada for breakfast? Every time, I do it any way. What if it's a crucial step? And I'm just too silly to recognize that?

6. I feel kinda doofy being thankful for things several days late (I'm a procrastinator! what?), but I am still really happy that I have this magical rss feed of y'all.
eruthros: Ivanova from B5 saying "boom boom boom boom" to Londo -- angry icon!! (B5 - Ivanova boom)
Boom, in this case, in the literal sense.

3.7 isn't big at all, but it was a sharp enough shake (and preceded by enough forewarning rumbling) that my mom and I dropped our forks and said "doorway!" in unison and headed off for safety. (Then, of course, the sharp shake turned out to not be the beginning of anything else, and it's only being scored a IV on the Mercalli scale by people in our zip. I'd give it a III, me, because nothing fell off the table except the newspaper, and we weren't panicked. But others are not so conservative.)

Also, I love the USGS. Back at Loma Prieta, we had to go turn on the radio and sit outside under the beams of the carport (I played candyland with the neighborhood kids) and wait for news to trickle in. We didn't even know how big the quake was for an hour or so. Now? Presuming you've still got the 'net, you'll get a report in about thirty seconds, 1500 Mercalli scale personal responses compiled into an intensity map in a minute and a half (more than that, of course, if it's a big quake), a preliminary Richter scale measurement in four minutes, and the whole shebang will be reviewed by a seismologist fifteen minutes after the quake. How's that for sweet?

***

I know I'm back in California because I fall asleep with a little tune stuck in my head. Not a Christmas song, no. It goes like this: "Approaching outbound two car M, M in one minute followed by one car L in two minutes two car N, N in four minutes. The next inbound train is going out of service. Do not board."

***

I think I'm still a San Francisco foodie at heart. [livejournal.com profile] friede asked me about good restaurants in Philadelphia, and I could name several, but I couldn't do what I did today. )
eruthros: Doctor Who: the TARDIS in wrapping paper and a masked Santa (DW - christmasy)
[livejournal.com profile] graycastle talked about Dalek carolers, and this sparked in me a desire to make an album of Dalek choirs singing Christmas carols. Featured songs: Silent Night, Joy to the World, Carol of the Bells, What Child is This... and other stuff we haven't thought of yet. (Obviously these are new series Daleks, with a Dalek god and Dalek heresies.) It would be GREAT.

No, seriously, imagine for a moment a Dalek chorus doing Joy to the World. Especially that last verse. "He rules the world with truth and grace, / And makes the nations prove / The glories of His righteousness, / And wonders of His love, / And wonders of His love, / And wonders, wonders, of His love." AWESOME.

ONLY! I don't have a Moog MF-102 ring modulator, which is the modulator BBC Radiophonics used to do Dalek voices. I just have a VST ring modulator plugin, and no idea what the Dalek Voice settings would be (fiddling got me a sorta-cyberman, but not the exact right lag for Daleks). And my google-fu has failed me.

You know you want to help me out! Because then I will make a whole album. And we can share and glory in Daleks singing "Angels we have on heard high / Sweetly singing o'er the plains / And the mountains in reply / Echoing their joyous strains." And it will be kinda scary, because the coverart will include scenes of flying Daleks from "Doomsday," but also it will be hilarious awesome.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (BtVS Tara avatar avatar)
1. Cooked! A lot. I made apple-pear crostada and cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie and mashed yam with oranges and rum and pecans and salad and other things as well that I've forgotten. [livejournal.com profile] m_shell made kick-ass apple-cranberry-turkey sausage stuffing, and was responsible for cooking the turkey. (Turkey is scary.) It was all quite good, even if we did have a minor pie crisis (for unknown reasons, it took an hour to cook instead of thirty minutes -- baffling). Also, we then ate leftovers for days.

2. As a corollary to #1, I did a lot of dishes. Because I have only three mixing bowls, I washed them about every thirty seconds all day Thursday.

3. Taught [livejournal.com profile] m_shell to knit. Go me! She picked out some yarn and everything, and is knitting a hugemongous scarf, which she had time to practice because...

4. ... I watched the entirety of the 2005 series of Doctor Who since Friday. We'd both sit here with our knitting, and then I'd pause it to explain Daleks to [livejournal.com profile] m_shell, and then we'd agree that Daleks were creepy, and then we would watch more Doctor Who. Um. Yeah. It ... didn't feel like thirteen episodes?

5. Knit. A lot. (See #4.) I finished a scarf and am halfway through a purse made of sari silk.

6. Discovered that I live in a town where you can buy pony carts on craigslist and the police need to remind people to lock their doors when they leave for a month. A month. I cannot deal. It was a front-page story in the local paper: attention! lock your doors! Where is reality from here?
eruthros: llamas! (llamas)
Happy Birthday, William (or Thomas, depending, apparently, on what mood Doyle was in) Sherlock Scott Holmes! The man who went by "Sherlock Holmes" was (possibly) born today in (probably) the North Riding of Yorkshire in (maybe) 1854. Ahh, the Holmesian canon: it's like trying to work out the Highlander universe. Or the wormhole physics of Stargate.

Which reminds me that I wanted to ask if anyone has checked out Sayers on Holmes: Essays and Fiction on Sherlock Holmes which has been out for a few years now. It's supposed to be a collection of Sayers' Holmesian essays, which I thought of as she wrote one attempting to pinpoint his birth year (fat chance!), though the reason I'm most interested in it is her famous radio play for Holmes' (possible) hundredth birthday, in which a young Wimsey consults Holmes on an Important Case. (Not that I used Sayers' essays today; Holmes' birthdate is from Baring-Gould.)

Actually, on the subject of writing about detectives, has anyone ever read Baring-Gould's Nero Wolfe of West Thirty-Fifth Street, in which Baring-Gould hypothesizes that Archie is Wolfe's nephew and that Wolfe is Holmes' son? (This would make Holmes Archie's great-uncle: hilarious.) It's not in print anymore, I don't think, but I might grab it somewhere if people said it was as amusing as it sounds.

And, of course, to bring this full circle, there's Rex Stout's famous speech to the Baker Street Irregulars: Watson was a woman.
eruthros: llamas! (llamas)
I am obsessively tracking a Christmas package containing a present for my dad -- not because I'm worried that it will be late, but because I like to see where it goes. "Hey, it's in Idaho!" "Whoa, it just inexplicably turned around and made a loop around Chicago!" "It's in the Florida Keys!"

I wish more tracking-package websites had maps with little lines. That would be fun. Little red lines showing your package making said inexplicable side trip where it looped Chicago. Whee!

Or I wish I shipped more packages. Because it's just so much fun!

Package tracking: the adult equivalent of the cardboard box the present came in.

Holidays

Nov. 11th, 2004 11:10 am
eruthros: Kate Winslet smiling at the camera (KW promo pic pink)
How sad is it that the only way I ever remember which one is Veterans Day and which one is Memorial Day is by logical deduction? And I have to do it every single time?

Because "Veterans Day" means nothing to me, historically. To get to the date, I have to do the whole "okay, Veterans Day. That's what we changed the name of Armistice Day to in the 50s, because of course it wasn't the armistice of WWII or the Korean War. And armistice of WWI was 11/11 at 11 am on a train. So Veterans Day must be the one in November and Memorial Day the one in May."

It does, however, mean that I can give you a few little interesting tidbits of history here.

The official recognition of the end of WWI by Congress called it the most "sanguinary" of wars ever in "human annals." Which has nothing to do with the holiday, really, I just love the language -- the most sanguinary of wars!

Anyway, the Brits and the French were way more on top of it than we were, holiday-speaking. Armistice Day in Britain almost instantly became a holiday, and there was this whole two-minutes-of-silence-thing. Whereas here, Wilson declared November 11th 1918 a holiday. But the following year he was all "well, I guess you can sorta celebrate it on the nearest Sunday with your church group or something."

So it took until the mid-'20s for any official recognition -- Congress declared it a sort of ceremonial holiday, but not a legal-holiday-vacation day. There was flag-flying but no time off. Congress didn't make it a legal holiday until the late thirties (by which time, actually, the prelude to WWII had already started -- the official fighting didn't start until '39, but still, isn't that interesting?).

And, actually, it didn't get changed to Veterans Day until after the Korean War, not WWII. Mid-50s. Popular discussion would usually have it that it was changed for the WWII vets, and so tend to locate it in the 40s, but that's not the case. The veterans service orgs of vets from both wars wrote to Congress and lobbied for the change, and both sets are included in the wording of the bill.

Oh, and the whole shebang where we celebrate some legal holidays on Mondays or Fridays to get three-day weekends? That way, way postdates said legal holidays. We used to get the exact days of holidays off, no matter what day of the week. Which really make much more sense if you're looking at the holiday as an important reminder of a certain day in history. The whole "Memorial Day (observed)" thing started in the late '60s, when Congress signed a bill to make four three-day weekends a year. Memorial Day, Columbus Day, Washington's Birthday, and Veterans Day. Because, the logic went, three-day weekends would encourage travel and culture and going to museums and education and things, and thus would improve the economy of the U.S.A. (I bet you didn't know that your three-day weekends were in point of fact a scheme to improve the GDP.)

Only people complained a lot, and mostly about Veterans Day, because people are still alive who witnessed the original day (unlike Columbus Day, which makes people sorta go "eh"). And people think of it as placed on a historically significant date (and I thank Congress for it, since it's the only way I can remember which one is Veterans Day). So about ten years later, whiplash! Congress changed their minds, and now there's no longer Veterans Day (observed). (Which, incidentally, was the fourth Monday in October, of all things.)

Memorial Day, on the other hand, is an arbitrarily designated day. Post-Civil War. Not based on any event. Just "hey everyone, take this day in particular to go decorate graves." No wonder I can never remember when it is.

This post brought to you by overstudying for the A.P. U.S. History exam lo these many years ago. (Page Smith!) From which it can be determined that my major problem with the exam was a complete inability to remember dates -- I always have to go "okay, so that was in year two of Eisenhower, and Eisenhower's term began in 1953, because of course the election was in 1952, so that makes it 1954. Ish."

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eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
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