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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Signy's LiveJournal:

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Monday, June 21st, 2010
12:45 pm
Sumer is icumen in
Lhude sing cuccu! Today is (or rather, at 7:28 AM, was) Summer Solstice, and the wheel of the year has advanced another notch. I love the summertime.
Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010
11:40 am
...Or not.
Won't be going to the filk con after all. Enjoy yourselves, all you who are.
Tuesday, May 25th, 2010
12:11 pm
The Sound of Music
I decided to begin formal voice lessons recently, more for the sake of improving my speaking voice than any real hope of musical triumph; I've gotten really tired of being unable to project much further than the other side of a dinner table, and sometimes not even that far.

Anyhow, I found a local studio that was willing to take my money, and went in for an initial evaluation. They'd asked me to prepare a song, so I chose an old friend-- "Where I Want to Be" from Chess. If you're not familiar with the show, let me just explain that it's sung by the male lead. (Or possibly co-lead.) I don't transpose it.

'Twas, alas, all for naught, as I was not given the chance to sing it. The teacher asked me what I wanted to get out of the class, and I explained that I felt that I don't breathe properly and as a result, vocal production is a bit of a struggle. She ran me through exercises for a while and told me that I don't breathe properly and that, therefore, strain when I sing or speak.

"No freaking kidding, Sherlock," I didn't say. She also asked me what sort of music and style I'd rather focus on-- operatic, Broadway, or standards. I chose, unsurprisingly, Broadway. She nodded and told me to buy an exercise book of operatic arias for the next class, but for this week she'd photocopy the one I should be practicing.

That was about the point I started suspecting that I wasn't being heard.

But I'm cool. I can sing arias. What wasn't quite so cool was that she apparently decided that I'm a mezzo soprano and can and should be singing songs that include terrifying high Cs and Es. And to be fair, I did manage to squeak out something that she claimed was a high E in rehearsal. I thought it sounded more like microphone feedback or Minnie Mouse's death throes, myself, but my opinion was neither asked nor appreciated.

I'll be taking my voice for a test run at Conterpoint, next month, anyway, right outside DC. So if all the local dogs start howling in unison, now you know why.
Wednesday, November 4th, 2009
10:24 am
I See London...
If you've read (or seen, I suppose) 84 Charing Cross Road, you might remember the line about how everyone who visits London finds the city they expect to find. The author, on being told that, replied that she wanted to find the London of English literature, and was told, simply, 'It's there.' I wanted to see that, too, but mostly I went looking for the city where so much history either happened or, at least, was scooped up and deposited.

It's there.

This is a trip that's been both years in the planning and rather incredibly last-minute; London's been near the top of my dream destinations for years, but I didn't really expect to go, expect to go anywhere, for that matter, until I suddenly found a week of vacation time that nobody else in the department had pre-empted, and I found myself in the travel agent's office looking for last-minute flights before I quite had the chance to talk myself out of it.

London is the second most wonderful city I've ever seen, despite the undeniable fact that her street layout is an organic, impossible, joyously illogical Jackson Pollock mess that had me cheerfully lost much of the time. I just picked a direction and a destination, and enjoyed whatever I found along the way, trusting that I'd find what I was looking for. Eventually.

And oh-- the things I found! I met Jeremy Bentham while trying to find the British Museum-- he's embalmed and dressed in his favorite clothes in the London University. Used to be in the staff room to 'participate' in the staff meetings, but now he seems to be just watching the campus buzzing around him. I saw an open-air book market under London Bridge while trying to find the Globe Theatre; nothing too special book-wise, but a number of matted illustrated plates removed from old books, including maps, scenic views of various neighborhoods of London, and a great many from original printings of 'Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens' that I wish had been a bit more in my price range. (And on the subject of Kensington Gardens, as I walked through them on my way to take tea at the Kensington Palace Orangery, I saw a man walking the same sort of dog Barrie had had when he met the boys for whom he wrote the play there. Barrie said it himself-- there always was some magic, some mischief, about where Peter was concerned.)

The Tower of London, a slow boat ride down the Thames, day trips to Salisbury Cathedral and the original Magna Carta, Bath (and you can feel the heat rising off the water,) and Stonehenge. Brass rubbing in the crypts of St. Martin's-in-the-Fields. Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. Westminster Abbey-- there's something amazing about turning the corner and unexpectedly finding the old friends who just happen to have died a few centuries ago, and the same goes for the National Portrait Gallery. There was a great deal of roadwork going on, I noticed, because the Victorian plumbing was being replaced. Victorian pipes. More than a century on, the waterworks were only now needing replacing. There were Starbuckses and t-shirt shops abutting Whitehall, which was being renovated and expanded when Henry VIII brought his girlfriend, Anne Boleyn, to see the tennis courts he was having put in. Tyburn Tree-- or, at least, a plaque showing where it used to be-- was in the middle of a busy intersection by the bus stop.

I went there looking for history. It's there.

Is it ever.
Thursday, October 29th, 2009
9:14 pm
Just so you all know...
London? Rocks. Rocks like a geologist's fantasy come true.

More when I get home again.
Wednesday, September 9th, 2009
9:09 pm
Time...
It is 9/9/09 at 9:09.
That's all.
Thursday, August 14th, 2008
11:11 am
Mythology Poll
I have a project I'm working on and thought I would like to get some opinions other than my own. The main characters in a series I'm developing are going to be named for characters in Greek mythology, and for reasons of irony, I'm naming them for the people who got the rawest, most unfair, stacked-deck deals the canon has to offer. Three girls and three boys. Now, I have my own ideas on what to call them, but since I have to good fortune of knowing a great many people whose interest in slash knowledge of myth equals or dwarfs my own, I thought it would be interesting to get your takes on the idea.

So. Who are your candidates for 'Most Unfortunate' in the Greek canon? Ready... set... discuss!
Wednesday, August 29th, 2007
12:02 pm
The Tooth, The Whole Tooth...
And nothing, repeat nothing, but the tooth, because I'm fairly sure I couldn't make this up. I spent yesterday morning at the dentist, having a cavity filled. While I was there, I got a reference to another dentist, a specialist who might possibly be able to do something to fix my TMJ. (For those of you who don't happen to be dentists, TMJ is a condition where the lower jaw doesn't line up correctly. It's a souvenir of my orthodontist's attempts at correcting an overbite, and it makes my jaw click like a faulty android when I do silly things like eating. Or talking.)

Anyway, this meant that I had to get up at the crack of dawn to get to my appointment. Two minutes down the road, the gas gauge on my car-- never particularly reliable-- slides gracefully from the 'eighth of a tank' mark to 'have you considered the benefits of walking' plumb empty. Fortunately, the comparatively cheap gas station was close by, and I coasted in on fumes. I rolled down the window to ask the attendant for some gas. Grimly, he just shook his head, and pointed past me. Like a fool, I looked.

The cop car parked there flashing his lights wasn't my first indication that today was going to be spectacularly unpleasant, but it was certainly the most concrete. He motioned me to pull ahead, so as not to block the pumps, then sat in his car, chatting away on his radio, for what was probably a solid three minutes. I don't know what he was doing. Running my plates? Flirting with the dispatcher? Calling for backup and/or a SWAT team? Whatever. Terry Pratchett's Sam Vimes says that everyone is guilty of something-- it's just a matter of finding out what. And given that the stress of being pulled over for--so far as I could tell-- absolutely nothing had brought on not only my occasional stammer but blown my slight tremor all out of proportion, I must have looked like I was guilty of everything.

He questioned me about my hazard lights. I demonstrated that they worked. Then he complained about the state of my bumper, which has some dents dating from an accident that occurred during the Clinton administration under a previous owner. Finally, he pointed at the frame that holds my license plate onto the car, and told me I wasn't allowed to have it there, because it partially conceals the bottom part of the plate, where it says 'Garden State.' Said frame was, so far as I can tell, original to the car, and does not obscure the actual numbers, but I promised to take it off. I offered to take it off right then and there, but he told me that wasn't necessary, told me to calm down, and told me to go. I remembered to fill up the tank, and I went.

Once I finally made it to the dentist, and filled out all the forms, there was the obligatory conversation with the receptionist. (I swear-- there is not a person in the world who doesn't hear the words 'antique book appraiser' and get little dollar signs in their eyes, usually right before they start telling me about all these old books they have in the garage, or a complete run of 'National Geographics' from 1992-1999. I'm usually at a loss what to tell them, because 'some old book that was my Uncle Lambert's' isn't a whole lot to go on, and they always seem disappointed that I can't name a dollar value sight unseen. End rant.)

The doctor's revolutionary idea on how to fix the TMJ boiled down to this-- he would make an appliance that would pull my jaw so far forward the click would stop. This would mean that my front and bottom incisors would touch. This, in turn, would mean that my molars would not. He called that condition an 'empty bite,' and it is uncomfortable, stressful for the jaw, and makes chewing difficult. His solution for that, he told me, involved making a second appliance for mealtimes, which would consist-- wait for it-- of a pair of clip-on teeth that would fill in the gaps, and would I like to make an appointment to have them fitted now?

I decided that I would call to schedule that appointment if and when it seemed like a good idea, and went back to the parking lot. Which is where I was for some time, because my car had chosen not to start. Again.

In retrospect, I think I'm rather sorry I didn't bite him.
Saturday, July 21st, 2007
12:23 am
Quiz

Your Score: Akkadian


You scored



You are Akkadian, a blend of the incomprehensible symbols of the Sumerians with the unwritable sounds of the early Semitic peoples. However, the writing just doesn't suit the words and doesn't represent everything needed, so you end up a schizoid mess. Invented in Babylon, you're probably to blame for that tower story. However, crazy as you are, you're much loved and appreciated, and remain actively in use by records keepers long after schools have switched to other languages.

Link: The Which Ancient Language Are You Test written by imipak on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test


Ironically, I've been trying to find a decent 'teach yourself Akkadian' book for literally years at this point, with no luck whatsoever.

In other news, if I don't post any more ever again after this, it will be because I was trampled to death by a horde of rampaging Harry Potter buyers. Take courage knowing that I died bravely, in the service of literacy and literature and for the greater good of Scholastic Publishing's year-end profits.
Thursday, July 19th, 2007
12:02 pm
New York
I wasn't in the city when the steam pipe blew itself to hell last night. That's the good news. I'd intended to be, but things didnt work out quite as planned, so I came home early.

My intention for the day involved seeing the show 'Curtains,' but the TKTS booth was sold out of half-price tickets. I could have had seats anyway-- I went to the box office and waited for cancellations, but balked at paying full orchestra prices, which was something like $115, for seats that weren't necessarily in the orchestra. (Actually, for that kind of money, I rather feel I should be sitting on the damned stage, being fanned by bishonen and hand-fed chocolates and peeled grapes. Broadway ticket prices are getting more and more insane while attendance drops more and more and shows croak faster and faster. For some reason, the people putting on the shows aren't seeing any correlation between those facts.)

Anyway, I regretfully declined the tickets, treated myself to lunch in the sort of sit-down restaurant that doesn't serve Happy Meals, bought a tempting-looking dessert from a bakery (for later), and went home just as the show would have been getting started-- 2:00.

The pipe blew-- a couple of blocks away-- around 5:15, just as I would have been strolling out of the theater. I wasn't close enough to risk any actual injury, but the asbestos they suspect is in the air would probably have been a different story, and trying to get home again-- especially given that the highway I usually take was under a couple of feet of water thanks to the torrential downpour we'd been treated to that morning-- would have been a living hell I'm utterly grateful to have missed.

This is the second time I've randomly decided to cut a NYC trip short mere hours before some species of disaster occurred, and I'm beginning to suspect that my luck isn't as abysmal as I've always thought.
Tuesday, July 17th, 2007
12:25 am
This Is New...
I'm playing with an idea for what I suppose is basically a medieval buddy flick-- I'm recycling bits and pieces of the Jeracreso plot, for those of you for whom that means anything, though not the actual characters-- a knight and a thief doing a bit of covert ops in the stronghold of a rebel lord, trying to quash a revolt before it starts. Applied politics. I'm not expecting much from the story besides the pleasure and the practice, and I wouldn't have mentioned it here of it weren't for a characterization problem that I can honestly say I've never encountered before.

It's my thief, you see. I named him Mouse, an unashamed theft from the protagonist of my favorite Delany novel. I like him. Except he insists that he's a she. Now, I don't want him to be a girl, because I really don't want to have to deal with sexual undertones in the growing relationship between the lawman and the criminal. (The lawman is straight.) My thief just smiles impudently and points out that she's not interested in either the lawman or my convenience, and I'm reduced to increasingly ineffectual pleading. I've never had to fight a character about their gender before, and I'm getting the horrible suspicion that I'm not going to win. Does this happen to other people?
Sunday, July 8th, 2007
12:33 am
Sunday, July 1st, 2007
8:48 pm
Yo Ho Ho and a Bottle of Coke
Let me begin by saying that, while I have no intention of running away to sea anytime soon, I think running away to a bay every now and then is going to have to be on the agenda. My dad's gotten really into sailing over the last couple of years, and last year, he acquired a Phantom. A Phantom is a kind of very small sailboat, with a hand-controled rudder and a single sail, which is controlled by a rope called a 'sheet.' As a rule, there are no 'ropes' on a boat. There are 'lines,' or 'halyards' or what-have-you. This one, as I said, is a 'sheet.' It's easy to remember, because it sounds very similar to the approved nautical expression for when you drop it in the water.

Anyway. My dad's boating club was having a practical lesson for a class of beginners, and he was assigned to one of the power boats, to patrol around the water and make sure the students were all right. So long as he was going to the lake, he said, he might as well hitch up our Phantom and give me a chance to get a feel for a sail. I haven't taken the class, because my crappy work schedule forbids things like extracurriculars, but I'm interested. And the only way I'm ever going to get past my current stage of 'tell-me-what-to-do-and-I'll-do-it' is to practice. Right. We have a plan.

I'd been on the Phantom before, after all. Once. With my dad handling most of the steering. And I capsized the boat. But nobody drowned. Anyway, part of the reason for the capsizing, I told myself, is that it's really a single-person vessel. Trying to double up makes for an unbalanced-- to say nothing of uncomfortably cramped-- boat, and therefore it wasn't really my fault. Accident of fate. Could have happened to anyone. And it isn't like I can't swim.

So I put the boat in the water. The sun was shining, the wind was brisk, the day could not have been improved. Almost immediately, I realized that I'd forgotten something, though-- namely, the rudder. By the time I'd figured out what was wrong, the boat had completed three or four complete revolutions, but I like to tell myself that the other boaters were laughing with me.

When you're using a rudder, turning it to the left will make the boat turn right. This is extremely important, and must be kept firmly in mind at all times. I'm just sayin'.

After getting that little problem straightened out, no pun intended, and taking a short run down the lake, I tried to tack and turn around. This involves not only the aforementioned rudder, but also pulling the sheet and turning the sail. Which is attached to the boom, a horizontal pole. A horizontal pole that, when the wind changes, can swing rather unexpectedly. At head level.

This tack, of course, was not unexpected. I ducked, and the boom passed smoothly over my head with roughly half a millimeter to spare, and the boat turned a majestic 180 degrees and began speeding back the way I had come. The only problem was that my hat had been about a millimeter off my head, and the boom had swept it neatly into the water. It floated, abandoned and forlorn, in the rapidly retreating section of water I'd been using until a moment before.

I don't often have reason to feel exactly like Captain Jack, but I must say that I think I achieved a moment of true Sparrowdom as I fought with the sail, which chose that particular moment to go slack. Desperate, I tried lying down on the bow and paddling with my hands, but it didn't have much effect. Eventually, I did manage to get turned back around in time to retrieve my rapidly sinking hat, and was quite triumphant for the split second it took me to realize that I'd dropped the sheet into the water, and the sail was now flapping loose. I got it back, just in time to notice the four-man sailboat (a Coronado, to be exact, manned by the class of newbies who were my excuse for being out there in the first place) about to ram into my vessel-- accidentally, I presume-- but we both managed to turn at the last minute and all was well. The rest of the sail was fairly uneventful.

Bring me that horizon...
Monday, June 18th, 2007
2:55 pm
ZOMBIES!
My mp3 player has no shuffle feature, alas. So I did this quiz instead.

LiveJournal Username
The name of your zombie infested home town.
Your zombie killing weapon of choice.
How much do zombies scare you?
Oh noes!!11 A zombie! What do you do?
Blasting zombies left and right with a freaking twelve guage. What do you think?wayman
Curled into a fetal position crying their eyes out.weirdquark
Is pwning some zombies with Don't Stop Me Now playing in the background.syonakeleste
Is sitting at home watching CNN and eating ice cream.gaudior
Get ripped to pieces by the zombies. Bummer.nightengalesknd
Is the zombie king who you must destroy to end the zombie menace.daelfric
Number of zombies you decapitate.424
Chances you survive the zombie swarm.
90%
This Fun Quiz created by Rob at BlogQuiz.Net
Scorpio Horoscope at DailyHoroscopes.Biz

Sunday, June 17th, 2007
10:42 pm
Thee-Ay-Ter
There's quite a lot of good theater happening right about now-- as the Tonys reminded me-- and for once I had a free Sunday. I miraculously escaped being invited to (some random second or possibly third cousin's) bar mitzvah, and my student had cancelled her tutorial. Seems that she had other classes to not do her homework for this week, and she can always not do her SAT homework next week. No sweat.

My first thought was to see a local production at the Paper Mill Playhouse, which is essentially Off Broadway on the Jersey side of the bridge. They're doing a limited run of 'Pirates of Penzance' that-- I explain, bracing myself for the cries of the purists-- has been fairly thoroughly overhauled, serioused up a tad, and Caribbeanized. Nobody seems to be even trying to deny that it's trying to ride Captain Jack Sparrow's coattails-- the theater is in some financial trouble, and a hit couldn't hurt-- but the reviews have been very positive, and I love 'Penzance' almost as much as 'Yeomen.'

The only flaw in my brilliant plan was that the box office didn't open until noon, and I had an hour to kill before then, so I read the paper. Where I found, to my dismay, that a show I'd wanted to see was closing today. Since it only opened in April... well, I'd really thought I'd had more time. The show was Boublil and Schonberg's latest-- 'The Pirate Queen,' a fairly fictionalized bio of Grania O'Malley, who was exceptionally cool-- and after the 'Martin Guerre' fiasco I really should have gone with my first instincts and seen it immediately.

After musing for a moment or two on possibilities, bus schedules, and the fact that my recent choices in entertainment had something of a theme, I made it to the bus with ten minutes to spare, secured a half-price ticket at the TKTS booth in Times Square, and saw the very last performance.

The reviews weren't particularly kind. The show was very much in the vein of other shows the pair has done-- you know, minor little doo-dads like 'Les Miserables' and 'Miss Saigon'-- in that it was a big, lavish spectacle, the sort of production that typified the eighties and nineties, and now seems to be falling out of fashion. And this one was very influenced by 'Riverdance,' which meant a lot of Irish step dancing. Now, me personally? I like Irish step dancing. Rather a lot. I also like tall ships, and the production featured a gorgeous illusion of one, and I knew just enough about Grania to care deeply about her story. (Even the obligatory-- and imaginary-- True Love. One could wish he really had existed on the strength of his musical numbers alone.)

The only real problem I had was that the songs weren't fantastic. The instrumental stuff was lush and lovely, but relatively few of the songs ever got much beyond recitatif-level. And for a show that had only piqued my original interest because of the composers... well, it was surprising. The show had everything else-- literally everything. The book was wonderful, the cast talented, the production breathtaking, and the orchestration lovely... but it had very little in the way of memorably singable melodies.

I'm glad I saw it, and I enjoyed every minute, and I'll probably end up owning the cast album, if only because otherwise I'll go mad with half-remembered songbits. But... well... it wasn't their best work. Rather a pity. With a better score, it might have survived longer.
Tuesday, June 12th, 2007
1:03 am
Street Fair
Yesterday, being sunny and nice, was, I thought, the perfect day to go to a local craft fair. This is partially because I needed cheering up after my class that morning-- I teach SAT prep, mostly to kids with learning disabilities. (Verbal only; me and math never did get along.) I've been tutoring my current student for about two months now, and so far as I can tell, she has yet to do her homework. Apparently all that vocabulary can be transferred from the flashcards to her brain via osmosis; I wish her luck with that. I have to be having some effect, because her mother was kind enough to attribute a recent A+ term paper entirely to my brilliant pedagogy-- I sincerely doubt it, but I'm not about to argue. So long as she feels she's getting her money's worth and I'm presenting the material as best I can, I can cash the checks with a clear conscience.

Though I do wish she'd just do the goddamned homework already. Grrrr.

...Anyway. The fair. My main goals were relaxation and funnel cake. The first could only do me good, and to compensate for the latter I decided to walk to the fair. It wasn't far, half a mile at most, and it was, as previously stated, a lovely day. That was when I had the brilliant plan to bring Elwood along. He would enjoy a nice long walk, I thought. This would be delightful.

Elwood didn't agree. A creature of set and considered habits, the idea of setting off for a walk in a direction completely opposed to his usual destination caused some minor hysteria, ceasing only when I carried him off the property and sang him a few verses of 'Captain Jack and the Mermaid.' After that, he seemed to develop an interest in the completely new smells in the suburban wilderness and peace was restored.

He fertilized somebody's grass a block or so away. As I waited for him to finish, I noticed a patch of clover by my foot, including one four-leafed specimen, which I picked for luck and pressed in my wallet. In retrospect, I think it was broken.

By the time we got the the fair, Elwood had had just about enough of the whole excursion. It didn't help anything that he's got some problems with his hind leg-- either a congenital problem or residual damage from his first owner, who was apparently quite abusive. So he was favoring the leg a good deal, and trying to hide in the various booths. This got a lot of attention from the various vendors, needless to say-- it just isn't every day that a limping Benji-type dog darts into your place of business and starts looking as Dickensian at you. By this time, I was alternating between carrying him around like a baby-- which got people looking at me like I was insane, because he's a fairly good-sized terrier, not a purse dog-- and letting him hop around like Tiny Tim in a fur coat-- which got me accusing stares from people who were about to call the ASPCA on me. Accepting the lesser of two evils, I settled him against my shoulder and turned back towards home. Did I mention that it was something like 90 degrees out? And that dogs radiate a great deal of heat?

Towards the end of the fair was a luthier selling a kind of dulcimer-for-dummies they called a 'strumstick.' It fingered like a violin, strummed like a guitar, was billed as being very easy to learn, and was absolutely fascinating. The booth owners demonstrated it for me, then let me test it out-- it was, indeed very easy, and relatively cheap-- $100 for a basic model. I was hot, sweaty, juggling a dog, and not quite sure how to carry home a stringed instrument in one hand and an unhappy dog in the other, and so did not purchase one, and I've been regretting that decision all day. I'm still trying to learn the guitar, and I'm still royally lousy.

Anyway, we did, in fact, make it home. Elwood's paws did not touch the ground once-- I've decided to get a stroller or a doggie-backpack or something, because he obviously can't walk more than half a mile at a stretch, and it wouldn't be fair to make him try, but I don't want to leave him cooped up in the house 24/7/365, either.

And there wasn't even a funnel cake vendor. Maybe I need to find a FIVE leafed clover next time.
Thursday, May 3rd, 2007
9:38 am
Glad That's Over With.
GROOOAN. MOOOAAN. AAAAAGONYYY. AARGH.

...It's not actually that bad, but the temptation to kvetch a bit lingers. There hasn't been time for it to be that bad; I think I've slept about twenty of the last twenty four hours, and I suspect I'll be napping again after I update here. Drugs are good things, y'know.

Thanks to everyone who commented to my last entry; I appreciate all the well-wishing more than I can say.
Wednesday, May 2nd, 2007
12:44 am
Waiting
Man, I haven't updated in ages. Bad Signy. Anyhow, I'm sitting here, surfing the Net because it's easier than thinking too hard about the doctors and knives I'll be seeing tomorrow bright and early. By the time I next read LJ, I shall be tonsilless... and then I get another six months of arguing with my insurance idiots. Unfortunately, I don't think I get painkillers to deal with bureaucratic stupidity. Alas.

In other medical news, Elwood has been diagnosed with epilepsy. The poor puppy has had something on the order of six seizures in the last month or two, and the vet finally agreed that waiting and hoping that they'd go away wasn't working. He's been started on Phenobarbitol.

The secret to giving medication to dogs, it turns out, is to have two lumps of whatever you're using to hide the pill. Peanut butter is good, or liverwurst. I'll put the pill in a large dollop of tasties, and have a smaller one on another finger. He'll get so anxious not to be cheated out of that second treat that he'll swallow the bit with the pill without a fuss. I suspect that there's a larger philosophy of life hidden in that somewhere, and I also suspect that it isn't complimentary.

I'm in the middle of rewriting the crane story. I think the problem is that it was too linear... and there isn't a whole heck of plot to begin with. The ship breaks down a zillion light years from nowhere. C'est tout. I'm adding multiple viewpoints-- namely, the crew themselves, trapped in a coffin ship, the designers, several years removed in time, helplessly listening to subspace transmissions they can't answer in time, and the ship, a century or so later, to whom the original lost ship and crew have become the stuff of legend. It'll never be much more than a series of character studies, but with any luck, I can make it at least an interesting series of character studies. I think I'm going to have to reduce the lost ship to a crew of four; there were six originally, but two of them refuse to develop personalities.

...Maybe I should stop rambling and try to get some sleep...
Friday, March 16th, 2007
10:34 pm
'Twere Best Done Quickly
...But unfortunately, it won't be. My tonsils will remain in situ for another six weeks or so; the first available slot is May 2. So, all things considered, "To the Maypole I won't go/ 'Cause my doctor told me so..." et cetera, ad nausam. I found out after I'd made the arrangements that it conflicted with somebody else's vacation, but he was kind enough to reschedule... after he found out that the Boss had just scheduled an operation of his own for the week immediately previous to mine. If his history is anything to go by, he'll need to extend his recuperation period a bit. I might, too. We're already one man down because the Powers That Be refused to let us replace a guy who quit a few months back, plus the official departmental jackass stormed off the job-- citing 'stress'-- after being told that maybe, just maybe, lying about undone tasks wasn't the cleverest of his options.

Judging by HIS history, he'll take a month or two off, then sail back to work, content in his show of power, and resume being a colossal pain in the ass to all and sundry. Because apparently, once you hit eighty, rules and standards are for other people, and the bosses are terrified of being sued and having an age discrimination suit hit the papers. In the meantime, it looks an awful lot like five of the original nine slots will be empty for a week or so. Good times.

I bet everyone appreciates me a LOT more when I get back.
Wednesday, March 7th, 2007
10:01 pm
Going Under the Knife
According to an ear, nose and throat specialist, my ears and nose are doing just fine. My throat, however... well, it turns out I have what he called 'chronic tonsillitis' and the suckers have to take a permanent vacation. I won't miss the rotten things one bit-- when he said 'chronic', I can assure you he meant it; I've been having a rather revolting species of trouble with them as long as I can recall. I won't burden you with the details, because you really don't want to know. You can thank me later.

Anyway, after giving me the cheerful news that tonsillectomies are much harder on adults than children, and explaining all the lovely things that can go wrong in a small percentage of cases, he got to the really good part-- although I can leave the hospital the same day, I then need to take ten to fourteen days off work to recuperate, and I suspect that the boss is going to have a litter of kittens when he hears the news. I'm just going to pray that my insurance decides that it feels like picking up the bill.

So that's my big news for the day...
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