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Here's rather a good interview, with Michelle Tea, exploring the quite adventurous life she's led over the years, as explored in her new book, "How to Grow Up: A Memoir". "So when I was living in the blue house it wasn’t like, Oh my, what is this squalor I’ve succumbed to? It made a certain amount of sense. I was a punk teenager and grew up in a house where people with money and ambition to better oneself were mocked. Toughness was a prized quality in Chelsea, Massachusetts, where I grew up, and you had to be tough to live in a place like the blue house, and I felt good about that. There was a certain amount of endurance to it that I enjoyed, like, How bad will this get before I break? I can handle it! And I have a dark sense of humor, so the absurdity of, say, your roommate painting the cockroaches with glow-in-the-dark nail polish was not lost on me. But when I found a cockroach in my hair I really lost my shit. I did have some limits."

Cards Against Humanity made $54,000 on "Black Friday", selling absolutely nothing. =:D

Here's a good story on ITER, the gigantic tokamak being constructed in southern France, a collaboration between 35 countries. It's a long story, examining the history of the project, its aims, and the inevitably complex bureaucracy that comes with so many stakeholders and budget-wielding politicians.

I seem to be gradually "waking up" again. ^_^ I noodled around with the Keystation 49e attached to the iPad again for the first time in many months, and picked up NI's iMaschine 2 to explore further musical options. I imagine it'll be a while before I've got anything approaching something worth sharing, but it'll be fun getting there. ^_^

Do you have any good net.radio offerings to share? Myself, I've been quite enjoying Apple's "Beats 1", for having a bevy of genuine DJs, sharing what they're liking, and with minimal advertising (just "Beats 1 is made possible by McDonalds", or suchlike, once or twice an hour). They run the operation out of three studios, in London, New York, and Los Angeles, with a roster of regulars, and occasional guests, making for quite a good variety of musical styles, although I do sometimes find them leaning toward rap/urban, which sends me scampering off, usually rapidly taking solace in rigelkitty's mixes, or sometimes Studio Killers, or the Pinker Tones. Elsewhere, I enjoy the diversity of En Lefko, based in Athens, making for unintelligible ad breaks, and ABC Dance. (Streams: En Lefko, ABC Dance)

On the iOS front lately: One Button Travel is a rather neat little interactive fiction game, which begins with you booking a journey, except.. it's not quite what it seems, as someone from the future is trying to warn you. The latter's trailer is appropriately cryptic, too. =:) It's a very simple gameplay mechanic indeed, yet, it manages to pull you into the scenario easily. And on the puzzle front, Maestria looks like it could be very promising, with challenging puzzles, and beautiful isometric graphics.

A few folk might be interested in this, though I haven't watched it myself yet: "Guy Martin: Last Flight of the Vulcan Bomber", which apparently aired on 4 last Sunday, 90 mins long, and available from the Bay.

I hadn't actually been aware that grapes and raisins are apparently potentially highly toxic to canids; intriguingly, the actual cause is, as yet, unknown, as confirmed by the Merck Veterinary Manual and the Veterinary Poisons Information Service. Intriguingly, the effect seems to vary widely between individuals - some dogs even seem fine with them, whilst others may be killed by just a few grapes, caused by kidney failure. I rather wish I had a good understanding of veterinary biology, to understand what could cause such a wide variation, more akin to an allergy than, say, a neurotoxin.

And time marches on.. I wound up checking up on what the Italian French Bakery back in North Beach was up to, and - well, at first, I couldn't even find it on Yelp, eventually only digging up the link courtesy of Spotlight picking up on an email message I'd sent with the URL in it. It seems they changed owners in 2013, and are now closed for renovating for "an exciting new bakery concept", which is either foreboding or intriguing, with me admittedly leaning toward the former. =:/ Still, we'll see. It was a great little neighborhood bakery, supplying several of the local restaurants with their bread, and deservedly. I used to enjoy wandering up there to pick up a focaccia. A slice or two of that, with a little nice butter, was quite the simple delight. (Which all reminds me: I do have a few photos of the place, which I've not yet put up anywhere. They were fine with me getting behind the scenes, resulting in some up close views of their circa 1911 ovens, in their fiery glory) And my favorite review? This one, which had both of us laughing out loud, wondering simultaneously if they were even thinking of the same place, and that for such a negative tone, they still wound up offering four stars. ^_^;

At some point in the future, I may return to Twitter - but it couldn't be on the same basis as before, as that was an absolute timesink. (When you're reaching noon before catching up with tweets from overnight, you know things are in emergency need of realigning) But how? I've always kept my net.presence simple - if I'm following someone, I'll read everything they write. Which seems to leave few options: either drastically cut back on the numbers I follow, which I'd hate to do, or set up a secondary account that would be explicitly for not keeping up with everything, leaving just some kind of small "core" I would try to keep up with. Still, I suppose it's hardly an immediate concern - just a theoretical, given I first want to be able to keep up with LJ properly again, before considering any kind of "expansion".

w00t! The migration from Parallels Desktop 8 (now at version 11) to VMware Fusion 8 went perfectly smoothly. (So far? =:) Mountain Lion is back and usable for Requiem, to strip iTunes video DRM from purchases made, and the Windows 7 VMs similarly were imported without a hitch. I'll probably just go with a fresh Ubuntu LTS release, rather than importing that. (Updating the bootable SD Card may be fun, but I recall I documented the process completely - handy for times when I need the code to see the actual hardware, not just the virtual machine, as with OpenCL work) Yep, installing 14.04.3 went like a breeze - just pointed Fusion to the ISO, and let it take care of everything else. So far, so good! (Tune in next week to hear the 24x7 grinding of teeth =:) Only surprise has been a minor glitch in that after a VM is resumed, the window is sometimes corrupt - resizing the window by a tiny amount, causing it to explicitly redraw, solves that. Next, I think, should be trying to build the vector video project in VS2010 again, to be sure everything's bedded down nicely on that front. I haven't yet done anything on the Windows 10 front, as I'd prefer to make sure that won't invalidate the 7 VM's licensing, or if it does, that I'm aware of such before taking the plunge.

That was rather cute - popped into the supermarket, and they had a small (eight member or so) brass band playing seasonal tunes. Really rather lovely. ^_^

A couple days ago, I received a voicemail message I couldn't have been happier about. Normally, I really don't like phone calls much - so intrusive, demanding your attention, disrupting your train of thought. (I now have mine set to only alert on a whitelist of a few numbers. Email's definitely the best way to reach me) It was from my mother. ^_^ The last time I'd been able to speak with her was in early September, back when she was in hospital for a brief round of observation, having fainted and taken an awkward tumble. Then, it was via the hospital's phone system, as she didn't have her own phone at hand. But even once out, I couldn't reach her - I'd only reach her voicemail, which I know she doesn't check (when I visit, one of my duties is to report any voicemail and text messages of note =:). I knew she was okay, as a social worker calls by daily, and a friendly neighbor had confirmed she's alright, but still - it was feeling deeply disquietening to not be able to speak with her myself, to the point I was ready - despite the finances - to head down to visit. So, you'll understand, to find her calling me, and promising she'd answer if I called back.. was a fabulously happy moment. Which reminds me, I need to use up a couple hours of talk time on that bundle tomorrow. Hope she's not doing anything. =:D

Thanks to a couple friends, and a surprise from the credit card company (I'd asked for a limit increase a couple weeks back, which, despite the impending income, they declined; they've now extended it to me after all), and the news that the paperwork for the next gig is indeed creeping along.. I'm breathing one hell of a lot more easily today. ^_^;; (I admit, I splurged: two new bottles of bubble bath - rose & calendula, and ginger & shea butter - and a bottle of Martin Miller's Gin, one of the most extraordinarily gentle, aromatic, smooth gins you'll ever find) Weirdly, checking for flights around Dec 16 last week was showing they'd actually fallen heavily since a few weeks before - though, at this pace, I suspect I shan't be making any booking until the end of the month, for sometime in early/mid January. What a long, crazy ride it's been..
 
 
 
 
 
 
Good to hear your mother's doing OK!
Thanks. ^_^ I do intend to chew her ear off on the morrow. =:)
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Thanks for that. I'll give them a good try. ^_^ I'm hoping I'll be a bit more active than in the past. ^_^
Twitter used to be a quick 'what is happening?' place to stalk your friends, for me. My timeline there is flooded now with RT's and work rants from well-meaning tweeps, both of which lend to fast scrolling through a visit. And they changed the 'favorite' button, a way to recall tweets one wanted to return to, into a little 'like' icon. Well, it does make responding with a fast "saw this" nod easier.

I may not post 'substance' but I try to keep things lightly informative, in a 140 character sort of way... ;o)
More on that Black Friday sale:

http://cardsagainsthumanity.com/blackfriday/