Accomplishments This Week

Mar. 23rd, 2017 08:31 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
1. Sent emails to my reps every weekday (via their websites).

2. Went to the gym twice, as planned, though I did a little less than planned last night due to some knee pain, possibly a result of Monday's workout. Planning to go a third time on Friday, and I'll be walking around a lot on Saturday.

3. Called the dentist, went to the dentist, forked out cash for a custom mouth guard I'm supposed to wear at night so there will be no/less incisor chipping in the future. I pick up the guard in two weeks.

4. Compiled my deductions and tax documents, and sent them to my tax preparer. *fireworks*

5. Made good progress on reading my review book.

Wednesday Reading

Mar. 22nd, 2017 08:50 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
This week, I've mostly been reading a book for anonymous review. And I read an issue of Time and one of Entertainment.

I am unsure whether I will ultimately be recommending the fanfiction story I'm reading right now. It's not bad, but I'm not desperate to get back to it, either.

I want to read a lot of things, but am apparently not doing so right now.

Agh Yargh Gyaahh

Mar. 21st, 2017 08:16 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
I could not tolerate political anything I tried to read this morning. I'm still going to send my daily emails to my reps, though. Not sure of the topic - such a bounty to choose from!

I email letters (through their websites) rather than call because 1) I am at dayjob in a shared work environment; 2) I feel much more in control of my message when it is written; and 3) I can easily edit past letters to make new, even more enraged letters.

I want an app that always replaces the face of Jeff Sessions with a giant poo emoji.

Good things:

1. I finally made a needed dentist appointment for a chipped incisor. Appointment is tomorrow.

2. I saw the Adorable Tots both Sunday and last night, and introduced them to pumpkin in hot pot, which they liked a lot.

3. I gymmed yesterday, after taking Friday off due to sleep deprivation.

4. Saturday, I am meeting friends for dim sum, followed by a WWI art exhibit at PAFA, followed by my other birthday orchestra ticket, Britten's War Requiem.

5. Ms. 8 liked the way I wrapped her 5 pound dumbbell: encased in a fuzzy medium blue sock, tied off with a sky blue ribbon with a tiny dark blue squishy frog semi-concealed within the bow.

6. I am making good progress on reading my review book.


Mar. 20th, 2017 08:37 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
I really like this: Despair is Not a Strategy.

"There is a difference between our actions being worthless and our actions not accomplishing what we hoped they would."

Prompts for the poor? *rattles cup*

Mar. 19th, 2017 11:28 am
klgaffney: (Default)
[personal profile] klgaffney
I was really hoping to set aside today for writing, but we're kinda behind our self-imposed schedule so we're setting a bathtub today (the thing with the bathroom kinda spiraled a bit). But I'm DETERMINED to do SOMETHING creative before I damn well forget how that even works.

First five prompt comments will get a response. Anything after that I cannot guarantee, but I will do my very best. [New folks: See here and here for examples]

[Also please keep this to the Dreamwidth side--LJ is as usual being a PITA for me right now.]

SSR Confidential: Dear Author

Mar. 17th, 2017 01:15 pm
chelseagirl: Alice -- Tenniel (Default)
[personal profile] chelseagirl
Last year I found out about this challenge late in the game, but was lucky enough to duck in as a pinch hitter. This year, I'm glad to be in from the beginning.

My request centers on Peggy and friendship. As I said in the request, I'm interested in Peggy's friendships with Jarvis and with Howard, as well as her friendships with Ana and with Rose. I ran out of tags, but of course I'm a fan of Peggy and Angie's friendship, and of Peggy and the Howling Commandos. I ship Peggy with Steve and with Daniel, but if you choose one of those, if you could emphasize the friendship within the romance, that would be great. The main thing is to center it on Peggy and her friendship with one or more of the other characters.

I'd be delighted to get a happy, positive story, or an angsty, potentially tragic one. I love both plot and character development. I'm not specifically looking for anything graphic, but I won't mind if you go that way, as long as the other requests are met. (No PWP, please.)

Thank you@

(no subject)

Mar. 17th, 2017 08:43 am
jhameia: ME! (Default)
[personal profile] jhameia
Busy busy week!

- Sunday: last minute went with a friend to the Anza-Borrego Desert to check out the superbloom there. I had suggested leaving at 6, getting there at 8, returning at 10, before the highway traffic set in. But it's too early for him, so we moved it back 2 hours. What happened was we left at 8, got there at 10.30, got back on the road around 12.30, and got home around 4 or so. There was a LONG time spent on a SINGLE road that was jammed up.

- Monday spent working on a cover letter. YL is having a difficult time so been doing a lot of emotional labour there.

- Tuesday I led a couple of events for the Grad Day of Action. Turns out "Courtyard outside the Physics Hall" gets read as "meet in the Physics Hall" *rolls eyes* So only one person showed up for the lunch in the courtyard, and another one for the hike into the Gardens. But the Gardens are beautiful right now, so I can't complain. Hung out the rest of the time with other grads in the Grad Lounge.

- Wednesday, had a very brief SSFAC meeting! And then did the SFRG, and went out to dinner with Lindsay and Eun-Joo. My Clarion classmate, Alan, got in around 10pm :D

- Thursday, Alan visited! We wandered the campus first thing in the morning, then I left him in the Creative Writing department. He came by mid-afternoon, so we went to the Eaton Collection to check out some stuff, like an artbook of Flatland, the original edition of Ted Chiang's STORIES OF YOUR LIFE, the original hardcover of Ellen Kushner's SWORDSPOINT.

We had dinner at Tio's, and at night, I found I had to walk back to campus so I could get the file for the final exam I'm giving students.

Right now, I'm staring at a giant pile of final essays to grade, feeling super thankful I made them go through a gamut of three workshops (much of this pile = previous drafts that I made them attach). They're feeling pretty good about this final essay, confident about the final exam, and I'm going to miss a bunch of them.

Losses of teaching this class:
- Sank in a LOT of energy talking to students that took away from writing my dissertation
- Felt woefully under-prepped most of the time to teach some of the more theoretical texts, like there were problems I feel I should have anticipated #impostersyndrome
- Still can't save some students. A student emailed me at 1am, 6 hours before the essay was due, being apologetic for not coming to workshop and asking to hand in his essay on Saturday. SATURRDAY? I assigned this essay A MONTH AGO to give you ample time to prep, PLUS had three workshops for each stage of writing! Maybe if you weren't gallivanting off to LA two hours away half the quarter you'd be doing better work. I understand some folks gotta hustle, but come on.
- I thought I was a morning person, but apparently teaching at 7am is way too morning for me.

Wins in teaching this class:
- Watching the Engineering students glow as they talked about going through Special Collection archives and handling papers directly about the founding of their college
- Freshman student going from strength to strength with each essay, and being able to teach her directly some database tricks
- One of my students may have scored an internship with a professor to help with linguistics research (his major) as a result of the final essay project.

Not bad for a class I was recommended for simply because I was out of a job.

Friday at last!

Mar. 17th, 2017 08:31 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
Tomorrow morning I can sleep in! I have been having a hard time getting to sleep since the time change.

I have seen Itzhak Perlman live! I would happily see him again.

I eavesdropped on the people behind me before the concert and in the intervals. They had a long conversation after the first piece, a Bach violin concerto, about how the different musicians sat differently, in particular how one violist had her leg out to the side and it was a good thing she was on the end or she would have bumped into someone. ????? Okay, then. Maybe they didn't know each other and it was labored small talk? Why not talk about whether or not they liked the music?

One thing I noticed was that almost all of the orchestra women have switched to wearing trousers instead of dresses/skirts. I think this change has been happening over the last decade or so.

I always forget how annoying I find it when people cough several times loudly during a piece instead of leaving the room and coughing somewhere else, and when people (say, that guy two seats down from me) wave their hands around in my peripheral vision. Pro tip: the orchestra is not following you if you do this.

I sort of clumsy-dance in my seat sometimes, so I can't actually criticize, yet I just did it anyway.

Also, my seat was terrific because I had picked it and paid for it to be so - balcony, on the side with the soloist, front row - but the little wooden arms dug into my fat thighs very painfully if I sat wrong. I recall this happened even when I weighed less. Even in the astronomically expensive seats down on the floor. But the sound in the Kimmel is exquisite, so I deal with it. The sides with the loose chairs are better - the chairs have a little more room, and you can shift them a little if needed.

It sounds like I didn't have a good time but I did! I was just a little anxious, and small things get to me more then.

Izhak! Perlman!

Mar. 16th, 2017 08:31 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
The first of my two birthday concerts is tonight - I am finally going to get to see Itzhak Perlman live, with the Philadelphia Orchestra! He's playing and also conducting a piece.

Last night, I went to hear the Franklin Quartet performing Haydn's "The Seven Last Words of Christ," which I liked, but didn't absolutely adore. It was, as always, lovely to sit so close to the instruments, however.

These things are important because they keep me obsessing/raging about people's healthcare being in danger, and the proposed governmental budget versus the current president's wasteful spending on vacations and his NYC palace and and and....

I need to back off a little, today.

Wednesday Reading

Mar. 15th, 2017 05:01 pm
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
[I edited this a bit when I realized I had several thoughts I had not included earlier, when I was rushed.]

Winter Tide (The Innsmouth Legacy) by Ruthanna Emrys is just out, and so excellent. I received a galley and thought, "I don't like Lovecraft, so I probably won't read this." But then I opened it up and the first paragraph seized me with the narrator's voice and with curiosity, and then I read more and discovered the whole creepy racist Lovecraft mythos had been flipped and made rich and realistic. There are lots of female characters, all rebellious in their way and using different strategies to be themselves in the world. It's set in 1949; several characters spent time in WWII internment camps, both a couple of siblings from a human subspecies and the Japanese family that eventually adopted them when they were the only survivors of their town. Another awesome thing about this book is that books are a huge part of it, books and libraries and archives, and who has access to them, and who controls that access, and what they mean to individuals and to peoples and to history as a whole. So, yeah, I'd recommend this book.

Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet Book 2 continues the amazing depth of worldbuilding from book one, and just makes me want more and more like this.

Snow Sigh.

Mar. 14th, 2017 02:35 pm
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
I am very disappointed our giant snowstorm is such a bust - in my neighborhood, that is. A friend who lives in the Poconos is estimating twenty inches in her backyard already, and still snowing. We got a lot of sleet in the city, so I predict nasty icy patches on sidewalks tomorrow, my least favorite thing. It will be Timberlands ankle boots with YakTrax over the soles when I finally leave the building.

I did get a snow day from dayjob, so even though I kept waking up all night and looking out the window, I got to go back to bed and sleep in, then woke up and had some food and coffee, then napped again. That was a lovely luxury. I put away my clean laundry (from last Friday), packed my gym bag for tomorrow, and changed the sheets on my bed. Next up is doing a last read/edit of the story I meant to finish up on Friday but didn't, and submitting it.

I was not at all into the weightroom last night, and was tired of my hands and wrists hurting, so I went to the refurbished multi-purpose room and did alternating sets of ten bodyweight squats and ten pushups, for a total of fifty each, followed by some tricep and pectoral exercises with ten pound dumbbells. I can feel it already today, in my abs, upper back, and triceps. Not sure what I'll do tomorrow night; I have to gym at lunch if I want to attend a now un-cancelled Haydn concert.

I discussed with Ms. 8 what she wants for her birthday, and I need to get her a lighter weight of dumbbell because she wants to do bicep curls. Also, she wants it/them packaged in fuzzy socks, which I did at Xmas and she found hilarious. All right, then, I can do that. Maybe I'll get her a three pound and a five pound...and maybe a two pound as is hard for me to judge what will work, since she used to complain the four-pound exercise ball was too light, but she wasn't using that for bicep curls (I don't do those much myself, preferring more comprehensive exercises). I had figured the ten was good for goblet squats and the like; she is a muscular small girl from rock climbing and parkour and karate.

The good thing about the storm not being so bad is that I have a ticket to see Itzhak Perlman with the Orchestra on Thursday, so unless he got stuck somewhere else, it should happen as planned. This is the first of two expensive tickets I bought back at the beginning of the season, as my birthday presents to myself; the other is Britten's War Requiem, which I've never seen live.

Another update.

Mar. 14th, 2017 10:08 am
jolantru: (Default)
[personal profile] jolantru
This week in drama minggu iniā€¦

Due to a drug allergy to the antibiotics,

I have rashes all over my body, the worst on my back, the most obvious on my upper arms.


On a happier note, I will be GoH at Swancon 42!

Come to me, snow!

Mar. 13th, 2017 12:01 pm
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
Despite just having had four days off from dayjob in a row, I would be really happy to have a snow day tomorrow.

Today, I'm back to both working and to sending emails to my reps. Today I went with "please hold off on this craptastic new healthcare plan at least until the Congressional Budget Office has its say."

[personal profile] drinkingcocoa made me the world's best lemon cake for my birthday. I brought in leftovers today for my colleagues so I none of us would eat them all up nom nom nom crash.
klgaffney: A box of punk band themed cupcakes. And heart sprinkles. (a sugar-frosted sweet revolution)
[personal profile] klgaffney
D!01: "There were dinosauri.... They grow."

No, there is no additional context. We have, however, discovered that it IS possible to make the twins' brains crash. After which hilarity ensues on an epic scale and I'm so very sorry we didn't record it.

I also learned that even with brains crashed, they can rattle off Dr. Demento's 'They're Coming To Take Me Away' quite competently. They said they learned it from a Full Metal Alchemist AMV.


I appear to have Borgore's "Decisions" stuck in my head. Just the chorus. On a loop.
Playing other songs doesn't help, it just goes back to this as soon as I'm done:

I want it all, so I get it all
I wanna eat the whole cake
I'm not sharing, no, I'm not sharing
You should have learned how to bake

That's all well and good, but I really, really want cake now. Just sayin'. I also probably could use some sleep.

test day and painted tiles

Mar. 11th, 2017 03:28 pm
klgaffney: (Default)
[personal profile] klgaffney
We hauled the twins to their high school first thing this morning for SAT testing.


w: Do you have everything? You're all prepared? Remember to hydrate.

twins: We have snacks. We get a ten minute break.

w: And remember to stretch. Do some calisthenics...

me: And pee. It's terrible to have to pee while doing SATs. ..Hmm, that's a lot to do in 10 minutes.

w: ...Maybe take a brisk walk. Or jog. Jumping jacks.

me: And duck and cover.

doom!twin02: And stop, drop, and roll?

me: Yes.

doom!twin01: Should we wear a paper bag over our heads?

me: No no, paper bags were proven not to work ages ago. Don't tell me you forgot your tinfoil hat?

doom!twin02: *snaps fingers* Knew I forgot something. Well, we are getting there a few minutes early.

me: That's right. You'll have time to mine the aluminum for your hats.

doom!twin02: Whew. Okay, good. ---*stares at practice booklet* *waves it at twin* LOOK! LOOK AT PAGE 132! THEY HAVE AN ESSAY ABOUT EMPEROR NORTON!

doom!twin01: ...I'm on page 25. What are you doing? Why can't you read things in order? What are we, animals?

We dropped them off without further incident, and then resumed work on War Drobe. I FINALLY finished painting all 70+ odd floor tiles (It wasn't good enough just to stencil them, I decided I didn't like the little gaps inherent in stencils, and hand-painted all the little gaps closed). I also painted all the broken tiles, because I was concerned that we might run a bit short on tiles and since we'll have to cut a bunch anyway there's no point in letting the bigger shards go to waste.

Now the floor tiles all have to be given 3-4 coats of polycrylic for protection. I have that scheduled on Tuesday, because W wants to borrow the room I'm painting in to cut some bits of drywall, and also I expect to have a phone interview with a recruiter that I've been playing email-tag with all week regarding a newly-created compliance and leasing position in the City, so I probably shouldn't be staggering around high on sealant fumes when that happens.

So then we picked up the twins and headed back to the shore for lunch and possible gaming (as MiL's house is a more central location for their former high school friends that they're gaming with.)

me: So how'd it go?

W: Did you have fun?

doom!twin02: I destroyed the written part--in a good way, I mean, and yes! It wasn't that bad. Well, I got cold and clammy and my hands shook in the second section of the math, but yeah, it was fun!

me: ...Because nothing says fun like a math-induced panic attack.

doom!twin01: *shakes head* *is pleased this nonsense is OVER so she can resume her knitting.*

Over, at least until it's time to take the first of the three different AP tests they felt compelled to sign up for.

Actual Winter!

Mar. 11th, 2017 08:56 am
oracne: turtle (Default)
[personal profile] oracne
It is way too cold to wear the nice skirt I had intended to wear to this morning's memorial service, even with fleece-lined leggings underneath, so it's a good thing I had a backup plan.

I am glad winter is finally here, however brief its visit might be. I am not tired of my various pairs of boots yet.

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