kaigou: this is what I do, darling (3 patience is not my virture)
Hello, fandom, my old friend. Been so long I've almost forgotten how crazy you are. Almost. It's okay, don't call me, I won't call you.

ANYWAY. So. Noragami. One of the first anime in like forever to really capture me, which tl;dr means: why the hell have I not seen in-depth, sparkling, thought-provoking commentary from either of the Emilys? -- [personal profile] branchandroot and [personal profile] annotated_em, that is. Or even [personal profile] starlady who is not an Emily, but does begin with a vowel, so that's close enough. ONE OF YOU. Satisfy my need for analysis! Or I shall be pushed to poke [personal profile] ivoryandhorn or [personal profile] phoebe_zeitgeist to carry the weight. Which I might do anyway, because analysis.

SOMEONE. AVAIL ME. My former fandom status as a near-BNF compels you!

Also, I just got home after enjoying two glasses of some really nice reisling, the name of which I totally meant to get and did not. In case you couldn't tell from the random name-dropping. Where is my next episode of Noragami? Or my next scanlated chapter? I'm retired from scanlating, so I'm able to say again that scanlators are toooooo slow. Damn it.

Should reisling be capitalized? Inquiring minds want to know. Leik yesterday.

I actually had to explain tl;dr to my sister this evening (while texting). Either I'm hipper than I realize, or my sister is seriously out of touch. I'm guessing the latter. Very eye-rolling, so sigh.

Also also, I realized while talking to my other sister that I AM the disruption at work. Go me! Doing prototypes and shit that will cause nothing but trouble for other departments, and this is WHY I was hired. This is awesome. I'm causing trouble and I'm getting PRAISE for it.

I'm considering changing my tag from "analysis is my chocolate cake" to "analysis is my greek beignet" because holy fuck you people, this shit is awesome. I am addicted to greek beignets. I shouldn't be, but I am.

I just realized that 'reisling' is another exception to the i-before-e rule. Which reminds me of the time I got sent to the principal's office because I demanded to know why 'science' broke the rule of 'i before e except after e'. Yes, newsflash, I have always been a troublemaker.

There was some other also to add, but I forget now. Where's my extensive analysis on Noragami already?
kaigou: Edward, losing it. (1 Edward conniption)
Realized I've only been posting like what, once every few weeks? It's been... real. Around here. Short version of current lessons (re)learned:

1) You cannot have a successful project without someone to make the decisions, aka 'manager'. Especially in agile. No project manager, you might as well accept the project will most likely fail. Or if it succeeds, it will be through no small amount of teeth-pulling, a lot of arguing, and a whole lot of flailing.

2) If #1 isn't obvious, I'm on a project where the project manager has a) been interim and b) been busy with other things and c) thought the project would be fine without a hands-on manager. Recipe for fail!

3) This is complicated by the realization that I'm working with an ENFP* who is utterly clueless (and mostly uncaring for) deadlines, and too busy chasing the awesome with no care for the fact that he's rewriting everything almost daily, breaking the build, and making it impossible for me to get anything done in my area of the project. Multiply the lack-of-care with an INTP on the other side, who is equally entranced not only by ideas (and equally bad with deadlines), but downright hostile to task management apps like Jira or Rally, yet loves to talk about how we're building an awesome app. This is turning me into an unhappy ENTJ, because someone around here has got to actually build this app. As opposed to just talking about it (the INTP) or re-building the parts already built (the ENFP).

4) What the hell an ENFP is doing as a web dev, i don't even. Really. I'm out of evens.

5) I'm the only contractor. Guess who's going to get blamed when we don't deliver.

6) Yes, I am making plans. They may change, but it's still plans. As long as I'm pretending to be an ENTJ at work, I might as well do good with it.

7) If I did not have a local network of other women devs to keep me balanced, I really don't know where I'd be right now. Probably in a bunch of miserable interviews as a BA or IA again, having fled the madness that has been this year's dev jobs. Having a network of people who know what it's like is all that's kept me sane.

*If you're not familiar with MBTI, look it up; my teammates aren't edge cases. They're pretty much textbook. It's me, as more of an xNTx, who's flexing to make up for the areas they lack. Like, planning, and follow-through, and the all-important communicate-with-others. The last one, times infinity. If I hear one more "oh, I forgot to mention", I'm gonna start throwing things.

WHY AM I THE RESPONSIBLE ONE. How did this I can't even. You know something's gotta be seriously wrong when I'm the one who ends up with the title "responsible one". Ugh.

ETA: on the plus/tangential side, for those of you still paying attention to the wip, I'm starting again. Now that I've done another massive round of research and let it simmer. Believe me, I've had the time -- sometimes hours while waiting for the ENFP to get around to, y'know, undoing/fixing whatever he's broken this time. Yes, hours.
kaigou: Edward, losing it. (1 Edward conniption)
I need something to say to a coworker (who is otherwise a cool person) when for whatever reason he decides to play devil's advocate. Especially when what I'm arguing is something that he later admits is something he also believes in, or at least would like to recognize as valuable. It feels like he's either winding me up for his own amusement (though he doesn't seem amused at the time, so probably not) or just doesn't realize that I can't tell whether he's serious -- and the upshot is that I lose respect for him. It's like, oi, if you're that much of an asshole, then maybe I need to change my opinion about you. Or something.

Today there was talk about UX/user testing. G was somewhat dismissive of there being any value in this. I've done user studies for ten years (contextual analysis and ethnographic studies most especially, which means lots and lots of talking to users at length), I told him every single time I did a user test or interview, I learned something new.

It was almost always it was something that opened my eyes about my own privilege: that I'm abled, that my language skills are top-notch even for a native, that my eye-hand coordination is pretty damn good, that I don't have motor skill issues, that my hearing's good enough, that my sight is good enough despite needing glasses, that I don't have significant learning or cognitive issues that get in the way of my comprehension. Doing user studies, as CP later commented, reminds we designers and developers -- we makers -- that we are not The User. It reminds us to be thankful for the ways in which we're fortunate, and to be humbled about the ways in which we have it easy.

All those things I do when coding like larger click-areas and story-answers on alerts and proper color contrast -- just like all the things some architects do in corporate buildings like wider doorways and bar-handles instead of round handles and ramps at every entrance -- these are all invisible if you're abled, but they're crucial if you're not. And the onus does not, should not, lie on the person who is disabled to make do; the onus should lie on us, as the makers to make the web/world inclusive. Because we have the good fortune and the ability to do so.

But he was arguing against this, and I went along until the point where I said, the web should be inclusive, for everyone; the web exists for everyone. G replied, no, the web exists to make money. (Someone tell that to all we fans who runs sites at a loss out of pure love, but I didn't go there.) The whole 'make money' thing was so cynical, and enough opposite his usual attitude, that I just called it quits right there. We're going to end this conversation right here, I said, and that was that (whew).

I'm not sure whether to be pleased or roll my eyes that he told me afterwards that the reason he loves talking to me about stuff/work is that he always learns something new. Except he excused his responses -- though not in so many words -- as devil's advocate. I'm so freaking sick of oh, I'm just playing devil's advocate. It's going on my list as second-hated phrase, right behind, can't you take a joke?

Dear internets, please give me a good witty comeback for the next time G says he's playing devil's advocate. Not too nuclear, since I do have to keep working with him, but something that makes it clear he's playing a game that I don't respect and don't have time for. Anyone?
kaigou: life would be easier if I had the source code. (3 source code)
[personal profile] branchandroot and I have commiserated in the past about this obsession over Making Code Look Nice (Just On The Off-Chance Someone Might See). I've always applied that rule. I mean, it's not like it's my own hair, which ostensibly I should be making Look Nice but hell if I can see it myself, so I don't have to look at it. But I do have to look at my own code when I'm working on it, so I try to keep it clean and organized and legible.

So I had a benchtest for an FED position, and naturally I organized the code like I normally would (although the commenting was more than I'd usually do, since it was a benchtest). I didn't fully minimize it for live-level presentation, but was still mostly legible. During the follow-up interview both the PM and the lead were highly complimentary about how nicely organized it was, that it was the highest level of clean, simple, efficient code presentation they'd yet seen.

I was all complimented until they added that other benchtests they've gotten back have consisted of a) the original png, sliced into large chunks and arranged on the page via basic css, and even b) a digitized, pixelated flat-image version of... the original png.

I'll take the original compliment as-is, but it's still hard to see yourself as that awesome when you find out the competition was that low-grade. It's like being proud of getting an A on what you thought was advanced calculus only to find out the most anyone else did was sign their name. If they're grading on a curve, that A might not have been so awesome, after all.

But that could just be me. Still going to keep organizing my code neatly, as a matter of pride, at the same time I wish I could pay someone to interview for me. I really do suck at extemporaneous on-the-spot questions.
kaigou: I am zen. I am BUDDHA. I am totally chill, y'all. (2 totally chill)
In LA Story, the weatherman Harris K. Telemacher ends up befriending a road sign. It tells him that he'll find the key to his happiness by unscrambling the phrase, "HOW DADDY IS DOING". Harris spends most of the rest of the movie puzzling over this, and at the end, he takes his (new) girlfriend to meet the road sign. Yep, side of the LA highway, there they are, talking to a sign.

Harris: I never figured out the riddle, HOW DADDY IS DOING. It's a riddle too tough for me.
Sara: I know it. It's an English crossword clue. See, unscramble means rearrange. Change the "s" with the "h," move the "ing" after the "s," put the "do" after them. Swap the "h" and the "s." And put the "i" behind the "d."
Harris: "Sing Doo Wah Diddy?" That's the mystery of the ages?

I just discovered that all this time, I've been doing object-oriented programming. I just never really grokked 'object' so I'd figured I was somehow not doing it. Then I get whacked in the head and I'm like, what? That's the mystery of the ages?

Then again, this is a common reaction to me when I stumble over something that's gotten a constant build-up of mystique. Like objects. When I finally grok it, I'm not sure whether to be disbelieving at how simple it actually is, or disbelieving at how much time I spent agonizing about it.
kaigou: (2 play naked)
There's a joke in this house about Scorpios (of which I am not one), but it'd take like a paragraph and a half to give backstory. Instead I'll just say that walking into a women-developer's meetup was one of the most awesome experiences I've had in months. Granted, as mostly a front-end person, I was sitting in the category of lightweight compared to the Java and Python women I met, but still. No one dissed me for being web-focused. The one time someone made (very slight) fun of me and one other person using PHP, all I had to do was point out that we could be using dot-net instead, and suddenly PHP wasn't the worst choice.

Still, I know there are plenty of issues with PHP, but it's not something I'd say I program in, per se. I use it per its original intention (pre-processing) and rarely do any kind of major work with it. I think the only time I've even bothered with instantiating classes was in writing WP plugins, and let's not even get into how kludgey WP really is. Which means most of the issues with PHP just aren't a concern to me. I use it functionally (as opposed to OOP) to do what I want, to talk to the sql db, and I haven't had need or interest in doing more.

Jquery, on the other hand... hunh, once you start writing functions, it's like the damn rabbithole. It's worse than the shortcut-functions I write for PHP, which I do solely so I can save time on the front end. (Easier by far to write get_story_name($id) or even multi_select_box($table, $group) than writing it out over and over.) Now that I've finally figured out (this) and how to make a var of (this) name (not just value), I have turned into a function-writing fool. I feel like I need to practice my maniacal laugh.
kaigou: Edward, losing it. (1 Edward conniption)
Well, not all people. Just people in the limited category of "people" and "selling stuff". Not to me, the selling part, that is. But people who sell stuff are proving themselves remarkably brainless right now. Almost as brainless as my neighbors in general.

As I've kind of danced around mentioning, there's an app. I built it (and some of you helped test it). It's live now. And boy is it collecting every twit in the city, and believe me, this city has 'em by the boatloads. All kinds of hijinks therefore must ensue.

I want to shoot them all. )

Don't EVEN get me started on the people actually organizing this. I love em, dog help em, but right now they're driving me crazy and it wasn't that far a trip in the first place. Honestly. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. If you want stuff for free, think back to what your site looked like when it was done for free (horrible) and the extent of your social media presence (none). That's what you get when you pay nothing: NOTHING.

Meanwhile, on the neighbor front, we've got a dog living in the 100-acre park behind my house. No collar, possibly fixed, and terribly skittish around people. Probably yet another cruel soul who decided easier to just dump the dog than find it a better home. A neighbor's been organizing a feeding station for the dog, and working on a way to catch it; she even set up a camera to get pictures of it (to help in determining whether it's lost dog or really was dumped). Her wildlife camera is seriously high-quality, getting some gorgeous shots (far better than mine!) and she's been posting them on the neighborhood elist.


So despite the sudden and terrible drop-off into bleak depression middle of last week (and I don't even have family around to do that for me, I have to rely on the insanity of clients), I've been trying to write. Last stretch of the story, but then again, I'm guessing it must be lagging tension-wise because no one's reading anymore, that I can tell. Am I digging? YOU BETCHA. It's been that kind of week. I could use some reminders of if not awesomeness, at least tolerability. DO IT OR THE APP GETS IT. *bricked*
kaigou: you are no longer in control of your life (2 no longer in control)
Since clearly I needed a break from several days of furious coding... I went and coded to relax. Yeah, I'd say this is starting to get to be troublesome. But regardless!

conlang generator v1.2 is up!

Now with the ability to set what you want, generate, then tweak how you like and re-generate without losing your previous options. The glory of a left-side bar and some judicious jquery.

Still working out the logic of how to do limited options on start/end vowels or consonants (ie "words can only ever start with G, H, J, K, or L" or "words can only end in "a, u, i, or y"). That's going to take some fiddling, so it's just a placeholder question for now.

btw -- I haven't actually tested in anything but Firefox and Chrome. It's possible the little site would work just fine in IE. It's equally possible that it'll just explode in your face. If you're on IE, you're using it at your own risk. Just so you know.
kaigou: life would be easier if I had the source code. (3 source code)
Per yet another dinner discussion combined with the need to produce some displayable code for upcoming interviews, I decided it was time for yet another insightful and elegant solution to yet another non-existent problem.

Lo, I have created a conlang word generator. Except it doesn't simply spew randomized letters at you, because that wouldn't be elegant at all, would it. No, as befitting my status as a nerd of the first order and a geek of the second, this word generator requires that you enter actual rules for your language.

(As in, whether a word can start with a vowel or a consonant, and the phonetic patterns of syllables, and what vowels can be doubled and whether a word can end with a single vowel or a doubled one, or maybe doubled vowels only occur in the middle of a word and doubled consonants only ever occur in the last syllable.)

Go forth and have fun, if you're easily linguistically amused. Do let me know if you run into problems, though, since I've only tested a little, and not nearly as obsessively as I hear you're supposed to. Or something.

kaigou: (1 Izumi)
Recently I saw a news bit about an upcoming convention for, I think it was, women game-writers. There was, of course, the inevitable bit about how women don't need their own gaming convention, and leaving out the menz, and the usual. (Uh, maybe it was comics? Great, my mind's going and it's barely only 1pm.) I'm all for safe space, but now I want one in my industry. Someplace where I could post this, and know I'm talking to people who won't act like I'm seeing things, or practically pat me on the head with the patronizing, or tell me it's not a big deal (or that it doesn't bother them so naturally it shouldn't bother me) and I should get over it, or whatever. But since I can't find that locally, it's all y'all instead who get to share my pain. I mean, this shit really is insidious.

kaigou: this is what I do, darling (2 the part that's less fun)
Now that I understand written Cantonese (in comics) uses the grammatical forms of Cantonese, not Mandarin, I finally know why a Chinese (from Shanghai) friend took one look at a manga I'd purchased and said, "no one talks like this!" She didn't know, anymore than I did, that it made a difference that it was an HK publisher. Now I know. And now I need to figure out how to get Taiwanese translations, although I guess this means paying more, seeing how all the import-to-US companies carry HK translations.

I've been helping with translations for a shoujo work that has its fair share of bishonen. I've become accustomed, over the past [censored] years with shonen work, of seeing self-identifying young women declare they hate the girl leads, or the female side-characters, or want some (or all) of the girl characters to die. I am slightly surprised that I'm not seeing that, with this manga, and it finally dawned on me that perhaps we've been blaming female readers for being indoctrinated with misogynist feelings (in re female characters).

Maybe it's simpler than that. Maybe it's that, honestly, the majority of female characters in shonen stories really are that useless, compared to their male counterparts. Because in reading commentaries by young (some as young as 12) female readers, for the rare stories (shoujo and shonen) where the female characters are not stupid, are not helpless, and are not whiny self-entitled children expecting to be saved... the responses are quite different. There's a whole lot of love for the character(s), and a certain sense of satisfied expectation when it comes to the pretty men being interested in her. Few have said it so blunt, but at least one female reader did: "of course they'd all be interested in her, because she's interesting!"

Speaking of which, if you like your science quite hard, and you like your cast strongly female, try Moretsu Pirates. It's translated (for no reason that I can tell) as "Bodacious Space Pirates", and the OP seems fluffy enough... but it's suddenly taken a strong left into hard sci-fi. It's like a stealth anime. The premise isn't that unusual: an unknown parent dies, and leaves some kind of inheritance (in this case, the letter of marque for a sanctioned space-pirate ship), and the child (usually a boy, but in this case a girl) must decide whether to accept the deceased parent's mantle. We're on episode four, and the heroine still hasn't actively made that choice, but damn. The first episode was fluffy shoujo, with a few hints. The second episode started to show a bit more of a feminist flair. The third episode, Mom's teaching our heroine how to shoot a gun (and not one that's small and pink, either) and the fourth episode, we're dealing with science the level of your average Star Trek episode. And not a twit-brained, big-chested, useless waste-of-space* in sight. The female characters are capable, realistic for their age (able to joke around), but also pretty savvy. I am torn between love for the yacht club president and vice president.

Here's hoping this series stays strong, because it's been a long time coming, not to mention to have two such strongly female-centric anime in one season (the other one being Rinne no Lagrange).

* there is a doctor-character who gets the fanservice, with boobs and garters and heels, but so far if she's in any stereotype, it's as the intelligent but somewhat sly femme fatale. Not perfect, but still not a twit. I'm not sure what it says about the expected audience, if the majority of the fanservice is an adult character.
kaigou: under this playful boyish exterior beats the heart of a ruthless sadistic maniac (2 charming maniac)
This is partially leading off my post from this morning. I had the pleasure of chatting with someone, yesterday, who does the same thing I do, job-wise. If you realized how few of us are actually around (for all that our job may sound awfully necessary, most corporations don't seem to agree), then you'd realize also what a rare pleasure it was to talk to someone who totally gets it.

Think of web application creation as a balancing act between two extremes: there's the design (what it looks like, what it does on the page, all the way to colors and fonts and whether you get a thank-you note when you're done), and there's the development (the code, basically). Designers don't code, and coders don't design, for the most part, and IMO/IME this has less to do with any integral dislike between them... so much as the fact that both sides require a lot of expertise. It is not half as easy as you may think it is, to code the backend of an application, or even to do a nicely-turned out page of CSS and Javascript on the frontend. Nor is it half so easy as you might think it is to come up with the buttons and the corners and the logos and the whatever else in Photoshop or Illustrator or Fireworks or whatever is the in-thing this week. These are areas that, to do well, do require a fair bit of training and experience -- and by then, you're probably firmly into the perspective of your area of expertise.

I'm the person in the middle. )
kaigou: (2 using mainly spoons)
1. I really hope that wasn't supposed to be authentic Korean food, because if so, bibimbap has about as much taste as rice and vegetables. When the biggest flavor is coming from tofu, I'd say there's something wrong with the picture.

ETA2: I have been reassured I could not possibly have been eating the Real Thing, and I have also been taunted with several mouthwatering recipes. Fortunately, my step-dad spent a lot of time in Korea and knows his Korean food, so maybe when I'm home visiting I'll finagle him into getting us lunch from his favorite little Korean diner. So no fear, I will not remain ignorant forever!

2. It's really fucking hot out there, so I categorically refused to wear black interview slacks. I wore jeans. I did not wear short-sleeves or open-toed shoes, however. I do have my standards.

3. I talked to the recruiter before the interview, and told her that this would be a pointless exercise on my end. Why couldn't I see the work environment? What information could I possibly get from a single person in a restaurant that would give me any idea of whether I would want to work there? Her response: "Actually, that's a really good question."

4. If I do end up taking this contract, the first words out of my mouth may possibly be: "for the love of all that's holy, do not put someone else through that, or at least take the fucking hint when they say they can't make it for lunchtime."

5. The high point: walking to the address and passing a guy on a big fat low Harley. He starts up the engine and immediately the car alarms go off on the little hatchbacks fore and aft of him. And me, my inner 18-yr-old just thought that was awesome.

6. Do I want this contract? Let me put it this way: I have bills to pay, so I wouldn't turn it down. But it's nowhere near the top of my list, either.

7. If that really was authentic Korean food, then I am the victim of a massive PR conspiracy or something.

[Also: apparently when this town says a place has "atmosphere", what that really means is, "we don't have a big television but it'll still be so damn loud you'll need to yell at your lunch partner". Why can't I ever find out these local translations before the fact?]
kaigou: (2 start drinking heavily)
I have an interview tomorrow. (Nothing big there, been on the search for a few weeks now, but that's another story involving many complaints about the "hot new title" in my industry and the number of managers who seem to be renaming all sorts of non-title jobs to the title, and wasting my time in interviews.) This position is not confused (as far as I can tell, at least) about the title/definition, but it's...

Well, it's a lunch interview.

Y'know, there's a reason I use my initials on my resume and my portfolio and my online site. Not just the basics of not letting anyone have the option of assuming that because I am Gender A or Gender B that I can (or can't) do the job. But also because I've done my share of interviews-in-bars, and interviews-at-lunch, and while I'm not 18 anymore (so I doubt it's necessarily the exact same dynamics), I can't forget those lessons. Lunches are what you do with friends, and dates. You are not on a date with your potential employer, and the casual situation makes it too easy for some guys (already in a position of power via gender, and then as potential employer) to make things even murkier.

Sign me up so very not.

On top of that, I did a search for restaurants around the office's location, because I want to know what else to suggest in case the primary suggestion is Italian. (Pasta, you're great, but you attack people who eat you, and same for you, Pho.) Oh, look, it's nothing but bar food. Independently owned, but you can't tell me that Joe's Bar, Logan's Bar, and something-or-other Bar & Grill, times ten, is going to be anything other than, well, bar food. I loathe bar food. Not because it's bad, but because it's boring. Life is too goddamn short to eat bar food.

(And life is way too goddamn short to eat what American bars believe passes for Irish food. You Irish on my flist, you know I like you, but the American bar concept of Irish food leaves a great deal to be desired.)

Or we could walk the two blocks to the nearest acceptable restaurant -- a Thai place. A quarter-mile away (about two blocks and hang a right, go a block). In 101F heat. For a fucking job interview.

And then I must ask: am I going to be expected to pay for my half? Why? I didn't ask to go on this fucking lunch date. I'd be just as happy not having to walk anywhere in 101F heat at 1pm, thank you, and I'd be just fine sitting in a nice, cool, air-conditioned conference room for an hour. And I wouldn't even have to pay for the benefit of being forced to stomach bar food.


I mean, I don't mind going out to eat. But if I'm going to pay for it, then I want to eat something I enjoy eating, and on top of that, I want to eat it with someone I want to be with. That list of people is really fucking short, and it does not include -- nor will it ever include -- an employer, let alone a potential employer. I am not interested in a fucking social life as part of my job. And I sure as hell don't want to be fighting to keep my attention solid, while choking down bar food, and trying to hear someone (or yell at someone) over the goddamn background noise. Is this an interview, or the equivalent of an introvert's stress test? And I'm supposed to pay for this pleasure?

I really hope I get word in the morning from the second interview with that other company. The one that -- ironically enough -- has offices within walking distance of one of the town's best sushi restaurants. I'm addicted to their sushi. But I still wouldn't go there for an interview.
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
I've been wondering whether I should compile the various posts (and unposted drafts) that I've done on fandom, and try looking at them as a collection of chapters about fandom and fanfiction. I think the current count is that I've been quoted now in (or at least asked for permission to be quoted in) five different grad-level dissertations.

Or maybe it's just that I may never be able to truly equate "published on the net" with "published, like, for reals". Wouldn't quoting me count as quoting from an unpublished work? How the hell do you cite someone's blog post?

I really need to dig out my craigslist acct info and get rid of some of this stuff... so I can replace it with new stuff. Like, say, butcher-block countertops. The ones that have been out of stock for the past two months, for crying out loud. I could use different ones instead of continuing to wait, but then I'd have to deconstruct the countertop bases to make room for the extra 3/16" I'd need. Much easier to just wait for the countertops to come back into stock. Someday. Damn it.

Ta-Nehisi Coates' series on the Civil War continues to fascinate me, interrogate my own education and long-held unquestioned cultural assumptions, and make me ponder what I learned as a child and what I just sort of absorbed even if no one ever said it. His most recent post, "The Civil War Isn't Tragic", has had me thinking today about how the war, overall, was presented in my childhood (formal, not family) education. I think the message in grade school was that it was tragic because so many people died, and so many families split north/south... but by high school and then into adult (informal) education, the tone shifted. It became more that the Civil War was tragic... because of the stupidity of people who kept it going and/or insisted on fighting in the first place.

That it was not averted by a peaceful resolution of outlawing slavery when there was the political chance on the board (as Britain did, in the 1830s) is the real tragedy, and that it dragged on for so long and cost so many lives is equally horrible. But the outcome? Not tragic at all. The aftermath and the scars? Tragic, mostly for (similar to the origins) being so badly handled, and so on.

But in the end: no, not tragic. Just stupid and horrible. And I think Coates has a significant point about the fact that we don't have a holiday to celebrate the re-unification of the Union. Why don't we?

Okay, rain would be great. Rain that consists of only 1/4" worth of water doesn't even make the ground damp. It just kind of made everything glisten for a few minutes, before it evaporated again. This is more than a little unnerving, to know we're coming up on heat-lightning season and we're in the worst drought in fifty years.

ETA: Rain! ... and the whole "20% chance of thunderstorms" was really "a few minutes of dark sky, followed by a single drop of rain." ONE DROP. One big honking drop landing smack in the middle of my A/C repair invoice.

kaigou: this is what I do, darling (4 those who dig)
"...a leader in the field for over half a decade."

Somehow, I'm not feeling over half as impressed as they seem to expect me to be.
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (strong women)
I did, eventually -- once it turned out that completing the form was mandatory, sheesh -- fill out and send in the insurance form. And must say, highly displeased, too, at some of the information requested. (The purpose is for the company to get a quote on group insurance, I'm told, so they're asking about crap that normally HR wouldn't know and wouldn't see, and there's a damn good reason why, because it's none of their business.)

That pesky question... I was going to leave it blank. But after completing all the rest of their crap, I was pissed enough that I couldn't leave it as it. My favorite reply remains "my husband insisted on keeping his own name" but I figured any group of twits stupid enough to even ask the question in the first place are probably too stupid to get humor so subtle. So I went with my original idea.

If your last name is different from your spouse's, please explain: We're not from Kentucky.
kaigou: Skeptical Mike is skeptical. (1 skeptical mike)
1. Payroll calling me about filing insurance paperwork by EOD today. See #2.
2. The cable modem died last night in the wee hours.
3. Payroll calling to tell me to fax it, then. No landline. See also #2.
4. Two conference calls, and two deadlines tomorrow.
5. Coworker asking if I'll email the doc. See also #2.
6. Seventeen minutes and thirty-eight seconds on hold. See also #2.
7. I require chocolate. See all of the above.
8. An 18-yr old twit who not only said, "and that will open the black box," (to which I said, "ah, yes, more often known as the command line,") but also insisted on spelling out config and telling me what it meant. Listen, honey, I was fucking configging while your parents were still making eyes at each other in sophomore-year History class, got that?

Strangely, all that, before eleven in the morning..and I didn't even have a chance for caffeine before it'd all begun. So by the time I realized payroll's insurance form had squeaked in before the modem died last night, I was already beyond caring when I read through the one-page PDF. The usual, this info, that info, blah blah blah, until... If your last name is different from your spouse's, please explain.

Seriously, what the fuck?

I am sorely tempted to write, because we're not from Kentucky.
kaigou: this is what I do, darling (unemployment hell)
The thing is, I've realized over the past month that I truly dislike working from home. Not in the sense of "every now and then", and hardly in the sense of "because I can't seem to get displined enough to do work" -- it's that I resent the fact that work is here, in my space, in the first place.

This makes for a cranky, lazy, and avoidant Sol. ) So, naturally, now I'm going to go hang shelves in the kitchen. Will post pictures later of latest progress.


kaigou: this is what I do, darling (Default)
锴 angry fishtrap 狗

to remember

"When you make the finding yourself— even if you're the last person on Earth to see the light— you'll never forget it." —Carl Sagan

October 2016

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