April 21st, 2004

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Fav English English words...

Today I was reading something and there right in it was of my most favorite English English words (as opposed to American English, if I need to make that clear): dodgy. Love that word. It's sort of like iffy but has a slightly different connotation; it makes more sense to call some weird looking food dodgy than it does to call it iffy.

There are lots more words I could add to my discussion (one of which I keep trying to remember, although I know it often refers to syrupy music) but for now, anybody else have favorites? Mainly I'm asking people who aren't English themselves but hell, go for it, anybody...

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    Laurie Anderson
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Possessing The Dispossessed, and Attn. dhamagirl

So I'm reading Le Guin's The Dispossessed right now and it's striking me as odd that somehow I was never assigned this as reading in high school, since this book is heavy on the sort of themes, and at the sort of level, that I was constantly encouraged to explore. One of my senior courses, "Dominant Ideas of Modern Man," would have been really enriched by this book. I wonder if the fact we didn't read it has something to do with the fact our teacher Mr. Evans just didn't tend to assign us books by female authors. (dhamagirl, any thoughts on this?) I certainly know I'd had enough education in terms of politics and philosophy to have understood the whole thing, so it would have been a good read at that time.

This occured to me this morning and subsequently I started thinking about how I really need to dig through my old, old computer disks and see if I have the letter I wrote either Gisela or Ines during my senior year listing out all the books I'd read for class that year. (They were pretty amazed by it, as I recall.) I'd just love to see that list, as I can remember a lot of them but not all and I'm curious. That was the year I took two English courses AND a multidisplinary two-period history/art/philosophy/English course -- and did a TON of reading. All three courses normally gave me 30-40 pages to read a night. Which explains why I never partied much, I guess, and also why I wasn't as shocked by college as some others ;) I must say, much as I detested my English teacher, the books were invaluable.
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Kiddy pics

Decided to scan in a few childhood pics of mine... Actually this is was sparked by discussion of the word "jumper" since in one of these, I'm wearing one, and it's NOT what the English call it :)

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    Arpanet, circa 2000 Kraftwerk wannabes

Maybe I should have planned to go shopping...

Right now my building is doing a scheduled "Fire Alarm Inspection." Which means there is an INCREDIBLY, piercingly high-pitched industrial-strength alarm going off throughout the building and yet I don't have to leave. My birds are singing quite happily, they are really weird about alarms, like they LIKE it or something, while meanwhile the piggies are hiding together in a box convinced the world's about to end. The note we residents got said testing 3-4. I wonder if they meant that literally. If so, I may need to go buy some parsley...

No, wait, it just stopped... Hmmm, I hopeful it's for good!

ADDENDA, 3:20: Nope, it's back again.
3:27: It's still going. Birds are still chortling like the alarm is a bird or something.
3:30: Oh, now they've added the second sirens that sound more air-raidish.
3:40: I can't actually hear this clip but here's an MP3 of the racket (WARNING don't click if you have headphones on!!!!!) that I think might give a taste. Think it might be too much for the recorder to capture though.
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    aggravated aggravated
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Gettin' the clients

Damn.... Sent off my estimate to the woman who needs a real estate site, even sent off the prototype of a design, and I was all confident... and now she's come back saying some other company has called her previously offering an "all inclusive" package that's like $300 less than my estimate. She likes my work very much but she's got some questions and additional requirements she hadn't told me about.

One of the things she wants to be able to do is upload/update the real estate listings herself, so I guess between now and Sunday, when she gets back from a trip, I'll have to see if there's some technology I can use to easily accomplished that. I know I could use ASP or some type of Perl-driven content management system but... first I have to research it and if I did go with that kind of technology, I'd have to put a lot of work into learning it. And that work is time... time I didn't put into my estimate. Which stinks because I might have to revise my estimate in order to get the job, and yet I'd have to put more work into it. Hmm. Well, I'll investigate tomorrow and see if I find anything that'd make it so easy it wouldn't add any time.
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    frustrated frustrated
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Boy, my boss is so tough

It's Wednesday and I swear it really did feel like "hump day" for me. Today, yesterday and the day before, I think I've worked more than I often did at my old job. All day long, I've just been sitting down doing stuff, and not even screwing around that much, but actually banging through one task after another in a concentrated effort. About the only real distractions I've allowed myself (besides LJ) is reading The Dispossessed and going out to lunch yesterday and today, plus going out last night for dinner. Otherwise my schedule is pretty much: wake up, shower, dress, feed pigs, read paper, eat breakfast, do email / web sweep, work, have lunch, work (with book breaks), 40 minutes on the stairmaster, dinner, chill out.
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    accomplished accomplished
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Reitin Groop

Tonight was the monthly meeting of the writers' group I'm in and as usual, it was worth going to. I think the group's been going for about two years and I think I've only missed a couple of meetings, I get so much out of it.

Tonight I was one of the two people with stories up for discussion and the story we went over, which I'd posted to the group last week, was actually the Wraeththu short story I've been polishing up. The people in the group don't know Wraeththu, but they still provided me with feedback I can use to improve it. Sometimes people "out of the loop" will point out stuff people who are fans will automatically reconcile even if it's illogical or not spelled out. Anyway, I got everybody talking and we probably discussed it for an hour. Since I already got a formal edit from someone and two other people who commented on it, I think I'm now totally set to go in and do the final edits so I can turn it in. At last!

After going over my story we (5 of us) went over a revision this guy Dorjan had made to a story he's doing that's a modern interpretations of the Fates and the people whose lives they're messing with. I will say that just like with other stories he's done, Dorjan's ideas are cool and complex, but his writing is still in a pretty amateur state and it's hard for him to present the big ideas he has. He has improved but it still needs a lot of help.

Finally we talked about a story anthology we're doing for distro at Dragon*Con. The theme of it is simply "Atlanta." I'm either going to do a weird dark fantasy set in Downtown or some "apocalypse in the suburbs" story. I keep having this idea of what would happen if society crumbled and people were caught out in Gwinnett County or something. I'm thinking about a big tract development devolved to the point they're eating dogs, kids are in gangs, people are cannibalizing luxury goods to make them into useful items, there's a local barter economy, etc. It'd have lots of evil irony and wickedness built in.

One last highlight of group was we had a new person show up. We had a period of really low attendance (in December it was just Bil and I) but every month since we've added one more writer. This new person was this very nice woman named Amanda who had actually figured out how to access my story even though it was her first time coming -- and she actually had read Enchantments so she was the only one who had a clue about Wraeththu. She ended up being the one to drive me home -- very pleasant. Good also to have a woman at group, as ever since we stopped meeting at Lynn & Joy's (who moved to Lithonia) there haven't been any women.
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    satisfied satisfied
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From almostnever

This is a meme where hopefully I learn a bit about the people who read my LJ, instead of the other way around:


Tell me two things about yourself that you know for sure that I don't know about you.

And then tag you're it no tagbacks.
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    okay okay