the art of perception

Sep. 22nd, 2017 02:01 pm
lamentables: (Default)
[personal profile] lamentables
I had a lovely day yesterday. It was grey and gloomy, and intermittently torrential, but I drove over to meet my dyeclass friend and then go to Compton Verney to their - about to end if you're in the area and are interested - exhibition, Seurat to Riley: The Art of Perception. It was perfect viewing for us, providing inspiration and insight for our printing and J's weaving.
We took our time there, because of my tendons and J's damaged foot, and had tea before we started and lunch after looking round. And then more tea. And we took advantage of the free bus service from the gallery back to the car park. We also talked and talked and talked some more.
It was a bit of a risk going out for the day because it was the first day of my new medication, so I was still suffering from the fatigue that is presumed to be an effect of the old medication, while the impact of the new drug is an unknown quantity. J is, fortunately, well-informed and thoughtful, so between us we managed my tiredness and made sure no plummeting blood sugar levels occurred. And I was still safe to drive home at the end of the day.

Swans #oftheday

Lazy photo of the day - zoomed from the car, without stopping and getting out.

Today has been rather lovely too. For a start it's beautifully sunny, so I have the doors open and washing drying outside.
Son of Boilerman turned up as promised around 8:30am and fixed my boiler whilst being chatty and delightful. While he did that, I pottered around gently and did things that needed doing, but without any frantic plan, which was rather nice.
And then I spotted the chap across the road who had been recommended to me as a potential gardener. So we looked around my jungle, agreed an hourly rate, and I now have a gardener. It seems like a perfect arrangement, as he lives a couple of doors away, is self-employed, and can just pop round when convenient for him. He's quite excited about clearing things back and then formulating a plan, and seems open to encouraging me to get involved.
Then the veg man arrived and once more, as his last delivery, I got to accept lots of free leftovers. It's not as epic as The Week of 18 Avocados, but I've got quite a lot of extra salad stuff, and a small mint mountain (a mint foothill). He turned up just as I was eating blue cheese on toast and thinking that it needed something fresh to complement it - pears and figs will do nicely, thank you.
I was supposed to let Percy out for a wander in his back garden around noon, but I failed at opening the back door. (Inadequate training.) So we went for a short stroll instead. On the way we met Ida, the tiny, super-enthusiatic dog who considers Percy to be her boyfriend. Much licking occurred. Everyone seemed very satisfied by this. On the way back I helped a delivery guy to find the right house and he was enthusiastically appreciative. (No licking occurred.)

In drug news, the new medication is definitely reducing my blood sugar. It's lower today than it has been for about a year. (It might be too effective, but we'll see.) I read up on the side effects of the old drug, pioglitazone, and it looks as though it may well be responsible for my peripheral oedema and weight gain as well as extreme fatigue. I wondered why I was getting oedema when the weather is cool, and obviously I blamed myself for the weight thing.
I don't usually read the side effects info. I used to, but concluded that the lists of possibilities are too all-encompassing to be useful and vague enough to make me paranoid. Now I wonder if that was a mistake, so I've read all the possible side effects of the new drug, alogliptin, which is basically all the same things as the old drug, plus a few more. Hopefully I won't experience any of them this time.
None of the side effects mentioned tendinopathy, but the timing fits...and one of the known side effects is an increase in broken bones, so that might not be wild speculation?

And now I have a whole sunny afternoon to myself with absolutely nothing on the Should Do list and many delightful ideas on the Could Do list.

Autumnal

Sep. 22nd, 2017 07:58 am
jhetley: (Default)
[personal profile] jhetley

Air temperature 49 F, dew point 44, scattered clouds, wind north about 10 mph. We're still trying to fill in Jose's low pressure.

Interesting Links for 22-09-2017

Sep. 22nd, 2017 12:00 pm
andrewducker: (Default)
[personal profile] andrewducker

"Home away from home"

Sep. 22nd, 2017 03:07 am
rosefox: A bearded man in a yarmulke shouting L'CHAIM! (Judaism)
[personal profile] rosefox
Selichot )

Rosh Hashanah )

It's genuinely disorienting to encounter all these spaces where I don't have to educate anyone or fight to be seen for who I am. Other people have already done that work, and leaders have clearly been receptive to it. (Rabbi Lippman is queer, but I don't assume that cis queer people will be welcoming to or understanding of trans people, especially nonbinary trans people.) I get to just show up and be a human being in human community. What an immense privilege. What a gift. Honestly, that might be the thing that gets me to stick with this—just the pure pleasure of being in a place where I didn't personally have to claw out a space for myself.

Josh met me and Kit in the park and we walked for a while (GMaps Pedometer says I walked 3.2 miles today, most of it pushing a heavy stroller with a heavy toddler; my feet and arms are very tired). I teased him that he should be glad I didn't make him meet the rabbi. But this is my thing, really. Maybe it's my latest three-month hobby. Maybe it'll be more than that. We'll see.
sovay: (Sovay: David Owen)
[personal profile] sovay
Even if the rest of the film were forgettable, Howard Hawks' Red River (1948) would be worth it for the climactic fight scene where Montgomery Clift and John Wayne are tragically and brutally and patriarchally beating one another's brains out and just as the audience, consisting in this case of me and [personal profile] rushthatspeaks, decides it cannot take another second of this senseless macho bullshit, Joanne Dru can't either and not only says as much, she holds both combatants at gunpoint until they cut the machismo and admit they love one another. It was a thing of beauty. ("You'd better marry that girl, Matt.") Factor in the gun-comparing scene between Clift and John Ireland and other not infrequent moments of no heterosexual explanation and the whole thing was a nice break from today's otherwise relentless grind of work, even if we weren't totally sure at the outset. It is not easy to watch a movie in the company of an active and presently tired and cranky eleven-month-old, but we managed. In other news, Fox these days is freestanding, fast-moving, can hang upside down by the knees if an adult holds them, and appears to be taking against the entire concept of pants. They like honeycake, though.

Autolycus is being heartbreakingly plaintive right now. He has a vet appointment early in the morning and it requires fasting, which is an impossible concept to explain to a cat. I let him graze all day and gave him a proper dinner at the absolute last moment, but he is attempting to convince me that, actually, in point of fact, he starved since then. We should find him some kind of special treat after the appointment, for being so brave and honest. Last night he and his sister shared in the Rosh Hashanah chicken. All cats are lunisolar.

In honor of the High Holidays, here is a post on Jewish superheroes and here is a brilliant riposte to the rather short-sighted question "How can you be Black and Jewish?"

Back to the relentless grind. At least it is almost autumn.

Game Review: Overlord

Sep. 22nd, 2017 12:07 am
green_knight: (Skyrim)
[personal profile] green_knight
[expanded from the review I posted on Steam]

Review and Discussion )


Bonus review-let: Forced.

Forced, Gamification of Games, Player vs. Designer )

So, yeah. I am learning something about gaming, game design, or myself from every game I play, and I am glad I seem to have broken through the mountain of shame (OMG, so much stuff I've never played, best never look at them) and guilt (OMG, so much wasted money). I no longer feel compelled to 'give every game a fair chance' just because I once spent money on it. (Frequently, in bundle deals, I did not even set out to buy all of the games.)

Overall, I spend less than £5/month on games and, overall, I enjoy gaming. I'm not going to get the same amount of fun out of every game, but if I can average a couple of hours of fun for every £5 I pay, that's actually not bad value for money.

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 02:09 pm
[personal profile] martianmooncrab
I didnt do much yesterday, I did find three different bags of meds from the VAMC in my hunt for the one bag that had the med I was out of. Ended up sorting and putting bottles away instead of doing much else. Watched it rain and sun through the windows.

Finally figured out where I bought the socks I gave to my Godson, his wife wants her own pair, or he needs his own pair cuz she took his.

Got a couple more things out of the Van, and read some more.

Terms of non-endearment

Sep. 22nd, 2017 07:28 am
garyomaha: (Default)
[personal profile] garyomaha
This is Omaha Restaurant Week.  I found out about it yesterday.  Apparently, I don't run in the "right" circles and I am not touched by the "right" media.  So, until I received an email specifically pointing to Omaha Restaurant Week, I knew nothing about this year's event.

We have attended previous such events.  Normally there are email blasts that go out early and regularly -- that's how someone like me usually becomes aware of things.  I get a message about something, which takes me to a website that helpfully lists the products (restaurants), cuisines, locations, etc.

Not this year. 

In the past, their emails and well-designed websites helped M and me decide to visit one or more restaurants.  I guess they decided this year not to seek out older diners by promoting this differently and by creating an awful website that takes clicking over and over to finally get to a list of restaurants, and having to further click to discover what said restaurants are offering for Omaha Restaurant Week.  Why not the simple one-click of previous years?  Probably the same reasons as to why I didn't receive messages early and often. "Hey, kids, let's reinvent the wheel!"

Which (finally) brings me to the subject title of this post.  Why does nearly every menu item at the "hot, trendy" places have to include at least one term that I've not heard before and have to look up?  Does that encourage some people to dine there, not knowing what they will be eating?  That doesn't work for us.  We lean towards the basics with perhaps a special touch.  We are open to trying new things  -- for instance, a new pizza place a few years ago came out of nowhere and, due to a different crust (which I think is best in town) and different cheese blend, rocketed to the top of our local pizza list.  But the words on their menu were all familiar ones. 

When I run across an unknown term on a menu, the first thing that comes to mind is a term I learned long ago:  fru-fru.  I don't know the origin (and may not know the correct way of spelling it) but I know what it means to me: pretentious, somewhat condescending, and probably not to my liking.  No, I'm not stuck on "meat and potatoes" but I prefer my menus in English, thank you.  So I see these unfamiliar terms on the Omaha Restaurant Week menus and they scream "fru-fru" at me.  (As you've likely gathered, M and I have not visited most of these places and we've not even heard of some of them.)

I tend to think of myself as a rather simple person when it comes to food.  I think back to a baked beans commercial from the 60s that sang "Simple pleasures are the best."  Indeed.  Without the need for fancy ingredients one needs to look up.


The Good Place: Season 2, Episode 1

Sep. 21st, 2017 12:32 pm
rachelmanija: (Default)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Absolutely fantastic. Do not click on cut unless you've already seen it. The whole series is streaming on nbc.com.

Read more... )

They must be told

Sep. 21st, 2017 12:26 pm
pjthompson: quotes (quotei)
[personal profile] pjthompson

Random quote of the day:

“Stories have to be told or they die, and when they die, we can’t remember who we are or why we’re here.

—Sue Monk Kidd, The Secret Life of Bees

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this random quote of the day do not necessarily reflect the views of the poster, her immediate family, Lucy and Ethel, Justin Bieber, or the Kardashian Klan. They do, however, sometimes reflect the views of the Cottingley Fairies.

Mirrored from Better Than Dead.

yhlee: snowflake (StoryNexus: snowflake)
[personal profile] yhlee
[Note: I used Cheris and Jedao as my playtest characters when working on Winterstrike, a StoryNexus game I wrote for Failbetter Games.]

"I can't believe you didn't think it was worth telling me that we're living inside a game," Jedao was saying.

Cheris sighed. "I didn't tell you," she said, "because you wouldn't be able to shut up about it, and it's hard being a good playtest character when someone keeps ranting." cut for Ninefox spoilers, I guess? )
asakiyume: (feathers on the line)
[personal profile] asakiyume
I'm doing a little bit of writing with some adult learners (there may be some high school students in this class as well)--just ten minutes or so. I don't have any pedagogical reason to believe this is beneficial, except for believing that when people have pleasant experiences doing something, then that thing becomes less daunting. In other words, maybe, if the students enjoy this time writing, they'll feel more able to tackle the sort of writing you need to do to clear the hurdles in front of them. But even if that's not the case, I think people deserve a chance and a place to try out writing, just for its own sake and their own sake. So.

My first prompt for them was this quote from Fred Rogers: "You can grow ideas in the garden of your mind," which I recalled from this autotuned song made from that and other remarks of his.

I showed them some gardens.

A garden in Holyoke, created by "self-proclaimed plant geeks":


(Source)

Randyland, the garden created by Randy Gilson, a waiter and son of a single mom, in Pittsburgh, PA:


(Source)

The magic gardens of Isaiah Zagar in Philadelphia:


(Source)

The blooming Cadillacs at the Cadillac ranch in Amarillo, Texas:


(Source is this Google image, whose original location is given as this video.)

The famous Zen garden at Ryōanji, in Kyoto, Japan:


(Source)

And I said, even when you think a place is barren, nothing growing, life pushes through, like in this parking lot in Boston:


(Source)

And then I asked them--what's growing in the garden of your mind? Several people wrote that they felt like the parking lot and talked about worries, but one wrote about a painting she's planning, and another compared his mind to a potato (and gave me a diagram to show it growing). It was wonderful.

What's growing in the garden of *your* mind, these days?

Thursday boring report

Sep. 21st, 2017 11:36 am
jhetley: (Default)
[personal profile] jhetley

Asters and goldenrod, goldenrod and asters, with patches of chicory. I may have seen a late-blooming St. Johns-wort or yellow loosestrife.

Roadkill limited to a chipmunk, one gray squirrel, and a fall warbler that won't make the migration.

Windy, cool, got out on the bike. Did not die. Ride takes me to 1100 miles for the year.

15.27 miles, 1:16:15

*whew*

Sep. 21st, 2017 08:55 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
Hurrah for hermiting!

Things I could have done on Wednesday: lunchtime free Zumba class, free Bach Collegium concert.

Things I did do on Wednesday: went straight home, ate, showered, crawled into bed with fanfiction, went to sleep early, sleeeeeeeeeeept.

I feel much better today, in the sense that fewer things hurt physically. And I realized this morning that nothing was stopping me from taking a day off tomorrow. That would mean I can sleep in after "Elizabeth Cree" tonight, and go to bed early before my crack of dawn train to NYC on Saturday morning.

What a removal of mental weight. A day off. How glorious. It will be much easier to enjoy my day in NY with a reasonable amount of sleep beforehand.

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 08:48 am
jhetley: (Default)
[personal profile] jhetley

Hope the "America First" crew will remember that Puerto Rico is America.


One of my dreams comes true

Sep. 21st, 2017 07:23 am
garyomaha: (Default)
[personal profile] garyomaha
(Don't get too excited by the subject title.)

For years, I've wondered why regular contributors to NPR stations can't be rewarded with some way of being able to avoid the dreaded Pledge Breaks.  We appreciate what the stations do, and indeed give our money to the stations, and we of all people understand the importance of support for the stations.  But please!  Do we have to listen to every single minute of on-air begging for money?  It's professionally done on some stations (and, dare I say, can border on being interesting) but on some stations it's a steady drone of local announcers reading years-old scripts.

Well!  I read where Chicago Public Radio station WBEZ (and possibly others) has announced that with a certain level of contribution, listeners will have access to a private online audio stream of regular programming.  No pledge breaks!

Yes, yes, I'm aware of the negatives here.  This gives some who have the means special privileges.  This is skewed towards those who have decent access to the Internet to receive the audio stream.  This gives special perks to some listeners -- but on this point, is this all that different from getting a tote bag or tickets to some concert if one gives at a certain level?

For some listeners, the pledge break can be the worst part -- and perhaps the only bad part -- of a Public Radio station.  This gives the opportunity to avoid having to listen to it, while changing nothing for those who don't or can't contribute more. 

Since I thought of the concept (I'm not claiming ONLY I thought of it, but M will verify the discussion) naturally I'm excited.  Unfortunately, I rarely listen to Chicago Public Radio, so I don't plan on giving more to them.  But, on the other hand, if Omaha Public Radio every offers this option...

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 08:37 am
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
We only ended up with one guest last night. Cordelia stayed in her room, and Scott, [livejournal.com profile] cherydactyl, and I watched Wonder Woman which they'd both seen but I hadn't. I enjoyed it overall, but I failed to connect with it emotionally. This is a common problem for me with action focused movies, especially superhero movies. I get distracted and just don't see what other people see.

Scott is showering right now. When he's done and dressed, we'll head for Cordelia's school to meet with a counselor. Hopefully, that will go well and not take too long. I just hope they've fixed the elevator. I don't want to climb to the fourth floor.

I slept badly last night because of anxiety. I was sufficiently wound up that the amount of Halcion that would normally let me fall asleep and stay asleep simply didn't. I didn't feel even vaguely sleepy. It was that I wasn't tired as much as it was that I had enough in the way of adrenaline and such going on to be quite awake. I'm not sure that Ativan would have done better for me, but maybe it would have.

Cordelia's dental appointment went okay. The dentist left us sitting for longish stretches off and on because they'd fit us in when they were already full up. She did an x-ray and didn't see hidden decay. She said that Cordelia's wisdom teeth aren't pushing on anything or positioned in a way that she'd expect to cause pain. The joint of the jaw seems to be fine. So we don't know the underlying cause of the problem. She suggested a cheap night time mouth guard in order to see if a guard would help at all (and in order to avoid paying $500 for something that, at her age, might not fit next year).

From the dentist, we went and got bubble tea for me and Cordelia. They've changed their menu display and options, so I had to spend a little while figuring out if they still had what I wanted.

After that, we went to Target and got Wonder Woman and the mouth guard. We stopped at Plum Market to pick up dinner at their buffet (you pay by weight). I gambled on a couple of things that looked (and were) tasty but that I probably shouldn't have touched because of spice levels.

My Captive Audience recipient has gotten back to me. I was right in suspecting that things had gotten lost.

Tired of the noise

Sep. 21st, 2017 07:57 am
jhetley: (Default)
[personal profile] jhetley

Air temperature 60 F, dew point 52, wind north about 10 mph, scattered clouds for the newspaper walk. Bike ride scheduled.

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desperance

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