Friday, January 25, 2008

1658 Ear Worm

Friday, January 25, 2008

You know how you'll get a song stuck in your head, and it plays over and over and you can't get rid of it?

For the past several days it had been the Rolling Stones' "Under My Thumb". Which wasn't too bad because at least I know the words.

Today, for some strange reason, not like I've heard it recently or anything, it's Carl Orff's "Carmina Burana".


I'm going crazy. But at least I've got taste.

Later edit: After the clip plays, there's usually a series of choices at the bottom. If there's one there that says "Thereon", listen to that one. Thereon is a Swedish metal band, and I'm really going to have to check them out!

1657 To Encourage Authorized Hugging

Friday, January 25, 2008

I bought this (it's reversible):

She's making another for me, similar to this one, but with laced shoulder straps that come up high under the arms, a slightly higher solid back, and a busk front so I can get into it by loosening laces instead of having to completely unlace. It will also have modesty panels under the lacing.

The custom one will be sort of like the black and purple ones (visit the seller's store), but mine is waist-length on the sides and back. (I love the longer length, and look fantastic in it, but my legs are so short that the longer bodice emphasises my lack of proportion.)

The custom jobby will be a while, but this one arrived the other day, and I love it.

I relearned why I needed the shoulder straps, though. This one makes the old soft "ladies" enthusiastically bulge out on the sides and they refuse to be restrained. Major muffin-top. I mean to where my arms get pushed out. So whatever else I wear it with will have to include a bra or a tight bodice to rein in the sides. Boo. (Unless, of course, I'm wearing nothing but stilettos with it, in which case nobody's going to notice side bulges anyway.)

1656 To Prevent Unauthorized Hugging

Friday, January 25, 2008


"The No-Contact Jacket is a wearable defensive jacket created to aid women in their struggle for protection from violence. When activated by the wearer, 80,000 volts of low amperage electric current pulses just below the surface shell of the entire jacket. This exo-electric armor prevents any person from unauthorized contact with the wearer's body. If an assailant were to grab hold of the wearer the high voltage exterior would interrupt their neurological impulses which control voluntary muscle movement. The neuromuscular system would be overwhelmed causing disorientation and loss of balance to occur and of course pain. The pain experienced is non-lethal but is enough to effectively and immediately deter contact with the wearer and provide a critical life saving opportunity for escape."

The jacket is actually quite attractive. I tried to copy a picture here, but it's a flash thingy and I don't know how to do that.

I wonder if it's legal where tasers are not. Matching pants could cut down on kamakazi ankle attacks from young cats (cut it out, Jasper!). I wonder if they make pyjamas?

Thursday, January 24, 2008

1655 Death of time

Thursday, January 24, 2008

This is a very amusing post from Chuck Ferris, who lives in a retirement home somewhere in California, about his attempts to kill a talking watch. Go visit.


1654 Sick, sick, sick

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I went to today, looking for a music video of "Fingers", and accidentally discovered an animated series called "Salad Fingers".

It's sick. Absolutely bizarre. The product of a warped mind. It's also addictive. You can't watch just one of the episodes, you have to follow it through. The first one, in fact, is a "huh", but as the clips progress and you get to know the character, you start to feel compassion. (I wish I hadn't watched the one about nettles, #3.) Number 7 is so sad, maybe because you finally have some inkling of what's going on.

I wanted to share it with someone, but almost everyone I know already thinks I'm sick in the head, so I finally sent a note to ... ah, I can't say who because she wouldn't want anyone to know how sick she is.

Anyway, she responded that yes, she and her husband had discovered Salad Fingers, and in fact, he had bought her a pair of panties (available on Cafe Press) with a mug shot of Salad Fingers on it, and a quote from one of the clips: "I like it when the red water comes out."

That about killed me.

A least I know I'm not the sickest person I know.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

1653 Busy with bylaws

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

I've been busier the past two days than I've been in ages. I had a lunch meeting with the chairman of the bylaws revision committee yesterday, and presented my comments on the "final draft" of the local Mensa bylaws. He found out why the design and publications departments of 35 products in 5 labs of The Company quaked in their boots when I reviewed their specifications and publications. I am detail-oriented and thorough. Also merciless.

The result is that he assigned me the final rewrite (which included rewording of two full sections), and also to present the changes and rationale to the board at Sunday's meeting.

I went to a group dinner last night, and started the rewrite after I got home.

He had been using Microsoft Office, which I don't have, so I retyped the entire 7-page document in Works Word (not so many functions, but adequate to the task, and available on most systems), made all the changes and corrections, sent copies to the other committee members for comment, and then incorporated their comments this evening.

I won't be able to go to the Sunday board meeting (I hope to be in NJ having fun), so I also wrote a description of all changes made, and the philosophy and rationale for each of the changes.

We have decided we can't call it amendments. It really is a complete rewrite. I'm rather proud of it. What we started with was unbelievably bad, full of inconsistencies and impossibilities. I don't know how it ever got approved.

I have a feeling of accomplishment, something I haven't felt in a long time.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

1652 Rude Awakening

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

I was dragged into a groggily awake state early this morning by Jasper leaping and bouncing all over my feet and lower legs.

I sleep on the "girl side" of my bed. The "boy side" is usually loaded with books, mending, an overnight case midway between packed and unpacked, you know, the usual stuff.

Miss Thunderfoot and Jasper have reached a sort of truce as far as the bed is concerned. Miss Thunderfoot sleeps at my upper chest level on the boy side, and Jasper "sleeps" (does he ever sleep?) on the far side of my ankles on the girl side.

I wasn't annoyed when he woke me. He's still a little kid, and I enjoy his energy, and he seemed to be having so much fun, so I just glanced down to make sure he hadn't pulled something out of the overnight case to shred. Without my glasses on it looked like he was playing with his sock, so I went back into a doze.

Then he stopped leaping around and settled down, and I started to drift off ...

... a few minutes ...

...when I was jerked awake by that "Kak kak KAK KaaaaaK!" sound that all cat owners know and dread.

I sat up just in time to see him throw up - kaaaakuk! - a mouse head. A HEAD! Just the head!

Followed by - kaaaakuk! - the rest of the mouse.

Followed by - kaaaakuk! - what had been inside the now deconstructed mouse.

On my BED! On my LEG!



Could have been worse, I guess. In the 80's I had a cat who, almost every morning, placed MOST of a mouse on my pillow for me to find when I awoke. Proof that she loved me, you know.

After I convinced her that her providing breakfast was very nice thank you, but I don't much care for breakfast in bed, she would put the gifts in my shoes. She had an uncanny knack for knowing exactly which pair of shoes I planned to wear to work that day. I guess I was supposed to take it to work with me for a mid-morning snack.

No, you can't scold a cat for that. Sharing really IS proof that she loves you.

Monday, January 21, 2008

1651 Looking for Lacing

Monday, January 21, 2008

Way back in high school, I used to know a way of lacing high boots that came out looking like a ladder up the front of the boot (made rectangles, with horizontal and vertical bars). I believe it was called paratrooper lacing, because paratroopers used it, because it stayed uniformly tight throughout under any conditions. It used only slightly more lace length than the regular "x" lacing.

I used to use it on my ice skates, so they wouldn't get that pinch at the ankle.

Now I'm looking at ice skates again, and I want to lace up them that way.

I don't remember how it went, and a Google search just gets me paratrooper boots, ice skates, and laces, but no ladder-style methods.

Anyone know how to do it?

If I ever find a guide, I'll update here. It really is great for ice skates, and tall flat-heel boots.

Later: Aha! Found it! Oddly enough, it's called Ladder Lacing, and is recommended for paratrooper boots and ice skates. lots of interesting lacing on that site. The section on tying the top bow, however, leaves me wondering....

Sunday, January 20, 2008

1650 Tired

Sunday, January 20, 2008

I goofed and drank caffeine at about 9 pm last night. As a consequence, I couldn't get to sleep. I had to be up and moving by 9:30 this morning.

I spent most of the not-sleeping time reading a boring book, working crossword puzzles, or wandering around the kitchen. When I finally did fall asleep about 7 am, I had one of those really weird dreams, so it wasn't good sleep. My tail is now dragging.

I don't remember much of the dream, but some parts I do remember. There was a floating walkway on water. Lots of people. I was sort of with a man who had two or three children. We saw a shark in the water, but then it went away. The man decided to go into the water to swim, and then I sensed that the shark was back, a little way out, although we couldn't see it. The children were about to join their father in the water, and I walked quickly toward them, calling them, to prevent their going in.

I was calling them with a high-pitched trill, to attract their attention and curiosity. I was fully aware that that particular sound would attract and excite the shark, but I did it anyway because it was important to get the kids. I did not warn the man that the shark was back. I don't know why. Just as I got to the children, the shark attacked the man. He was screaming. I hustled the kids into a speedboat. Even though the man was underwater being torn apart, we could still clearly hear him screaming as we sped away.

Another scene, later. I had been injured somehow earlier in the dream, and a doctor in a jungle had stitched up some deep cuts in my right arm. In this scene, I am going down corridors, opening doors, looking for something. I finally find a young person with whom I am supposed to continue the search. I had forgotten the injury to my arm until the young person asked how it was. I said it must be almost healed by now, and I unwrapped the bandages to show him/her. The cuts on the forearm were closed and healing, stitches dissolving on their own. But then when I unwrapped the elbow, I found that the entire inside of my elbow was a palm-sized hole, no tissue, I could see right down into the elbow workings. It wasn't infected - it just wasn't there. I had nothing clean to rewrap it with, and got worried about infection. So I bent my arm up tightly to keep the hole covered.

Even though there's a lot of the dream I can't remember, one thing I do know is that I had a dog throughout the dream. It was sleek, solid black, muscular, looked sort of like a whippet or Manchester terrier, smaller than a whippet but bigger than a Manchester. It was with me constantly, tight to my right calf, never more than a foot away. It turned when I turned. It was very comforting having it there. It (he?) and I had a strong connection.

When I woke up, my right arm was tightly bent, fisted, close to my chest. Must have been that way for a while, because it's still tired. I practically had to pry it straight.

What meaning, if any, does the dream have? I don't know. I'm amused by the dog, though. I have often thought my NJ friend is very Doberman-like. Strong, dark, muscular, intelligent, protective, good to have on your side in a fight. But also liable to snap when pushed, a bit unpredictable, unfathomable. Compare the three breeds below.


Manchester Terrier:

Doberman Pinscher:


1649 No Year's Resolutions

Sunday, January 20, 2008

I didn't make any New Year's resolutions because I never keep them. Ever.

Several months ago I made some promises to myself.
I would wash dishes when I use them. No more building up a sinkful.
I would scan and dispose of the newspaper (in the recycle bag) every day. No more making piles of unread newspapers.
As a magazine came in, I would discard the previous month's copy. If I haven't read it by now, I won't.

None of that is difficult.

So howcum I have a sinkful of dirty dishes, and several stacks of unread newspapers and magazines?

'Cause I'm a slob, that's why.