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17th April 2015

8:41pm: Two love poems (Shelley, Kavanaugh)
Of a sort...or a kind.

Body below the cutCollapse )

Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/231472.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

18th February 2015

5:56pm: Notes from a trip to New York City
Just some random notes I took while on a trip to New York City for a two-day conference at the United Nations, followed by an overnight stay at my parent’s place on the way back.
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Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/231224.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

31st January 2015

9:11pm: Super Bowl V: what was lost, now is found...
From the "yet another Internet subcommunity you didn't know was out there" file...

So, tomorrow is Super Bowl XLIX (or for non-football fans, "the day all the cool new commercials come out."). Well, way back in 1971, Super Bowl V was played, between the Colts and Cowboys...
Video and notes behind the cutCollapse )

Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/231066.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

23rd January 2015

5:56pm: Four notes
* It may be my Philly-area roots coming out, but nothing quite hits the spot when you're driving home and hungry than a soft pretzel, still soft and salty but not too salty, preferably warm but still OK if not. Yum. Mustard optional. I also reflect on the parallelism of going to a WaWa for random sundries growing up, and now living in an area where I do the same thing going home from work.
* I need to be a more aware re: monitoring how my joints react to bad weather coming in. My body was noticeably achy and uncomfortable all day, perhaps in anticipation of the storm system we're supposed to get smacked around by later tonight. Would be helpful to know if there's actually a correlation, rather than it just being "one of those days" at random.
* I think adding an electric blanket at night has been a big quality-of-life boost for me. Granted, it makes getting *out* of bed more grumpily difficult in the morning, but I don't miss waking up in the middle of the night with cold joints in pain, not one bit. (the cats like the auto-warmed blanket perhaps even more than I do, to be fair).
* A thing I take its absence for granted now, but also don't miss one bit? Cockroaches. My family lived in an apartment that had them until I was about 6, then I experienced them again in the summer apartment I had in Bowling Green while finishing my MA, and *all* the apartments I had while at Ohio State had them, also (to various degrees of crawlingness). You do learn to stop thinking about things creeping around at all times while living with it, in my experience, but really, its too easy to take a pest-less house for granted. Sidebar: also don't miss sleeping in places where one wakes up to a series of spider bites inflicted overnight, either.

Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/230680.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

9th January 2015

2:29pm: VIA personality assessment results
I took the VIA personality assessment at http://www.viacharacter.org/www/Character-Strengths/Personality-Assessment . For a free test, it was fairly comprehensive (over 100 questions) and the results correlated fairly well with other tests I've taken.

Results behind the cutCollapse )

Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/230509.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

21st December 2014

5:49pm: General life notes (from December FB)
These were made on different dates on Facebook, if you read me there you've probably
already seen most of these. Sharing for those who don't FB, and for life archival purposes.
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Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/230123.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

17th December 2014

8:15pm: Gratefulness posts (from October)
Back in Oct., I made the following series of gratefulness posts on Facebook. I wanted to share them here, for those who didn't see them as well as for archival purposes.

Continued after the cut...Collapse )

Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/229758.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

14th December 2014

12:49pm: Mirror test
Tap, tap. Is this thing on?
I live?

(mostly a post to check whether the mirror from Dreamwidth.org to LJ is working for my account...it appears I may need to post at DW first, then hopefully it gets echoed over at Livejournal. Still figuring how this works...)

Crossposted from http://tagryn.dreamwidth.org/228753.html where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only

1st November 2014

9:45pm: Final garden update, 2014
Final garden update of the season. This turned out to be longer than is the norm for Facebook, so I'm putting it up in LJ instead.
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25th October 2014

10:04am: Flash essay: Style vs. Substance
a.k.a. "When is it OK - even necessary - to be an a-hole, and when are you just being an a-hole?"

A friend of mine at Facebook linked to an essay written by Chris Kluwe on the GamerGate controversy. You can read it at that link - be warned, he has some rather NSFW language. Chris has a definite perspective, and I think it comes out very clearly in his writing. What's interesting to me isn't so much the debate itself - its been burning on Twitter already for weeks if not months - but I did want to write a bit about my own reaction.
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19th October 2014

3:31pm: Let Evening Come, by Jane Kenyon
Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.
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27th September 2014

6:04pm: I Am Not I
I am not I.
                                   I am this one
walking beside me whom I do not see,
whom at times I manage to visit,
and whom at other times I forget;
who remains calm and silent while I talk,
and forgives, gently, when I hate,
who walks where I am not,
who will remain standing when I die.

                           - Juan Ramón Jiménez


possible interpretation + graphicCollapse )

10th August 2014

7:31pm: Guardians of the Galaxy
We saw "Guardians of the Galaxy" today. Great fun - we both really enjoyed the humor as well as the music (mix tapes!). I didn't read much of the GoG comic as a kid - the only character I was acquainted with was Drax the Destroyer, and that from his appearances in "The Avengers." The Kree I remember from "Captain Marvel." I find it interesting that the Skrull haven't appeared in any Marvel movie yet (apparently for legal reasons) considering what a catalyst the ongoing Kree-Skrull war was in so many Marvel storylines. Bonus: the trailer for the next Hobbit film is in the previews.

27th July 2014

5:20pm: Books I'm currently reading
"The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity" (Julia Cameron and Mark Bryan, 1992) - I'm only a little ways through Chapter 1 so far, but I can tell this could be a transformative book. I've been having troubles with doing the work in my writing, and these have been growing for a long time. "The Artist's Way" is about unblocking the creative process, and while the "spiritual" part in the title might be offputting for some people, the author explains why that part is there but in a way that most people can probably work with. For me, I can only go through at most a half-chapter at a time before setting it down for the day, which is usually a sign that I'm being challenged and am starting to fight it and gettting defensive. When I sense that, I just set it aside and let my subconscious process the ideas for a while, then come back to it again. Thanks to Liralen for the suggestion to try this book.

"Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness" (Peggy Noonan, 1994) - This is a reread for me, I think I first read it a few years after it came out. Noonan came to prominence as a speechwriter for the Reagan White House; this book deals mainly with the period around the '92 election when G.H.W. Bush was running for reelection against Bill Clinton. Its interesting from a retrospective stance, in that the author makes a fair number of observations as to why Bush's campaign was headed towards failure, what kind of president Clinton would be, and so on, but it is told largely in stories and talks between other people and herself rather than as bare prose, which makes it much easier to read. To me, there's also a lot of wisdom in what Noonan writes here, and some of that may have to do with our sharing similar backgrounds of coming from traditionally Catholic households, going through the standard Catholic education system (albeit 20 years apart), and so on. While she was living in New York City at the time, she was also spending a lot of her time commuting down to DC, and her observations about the life here are also interesting to me after having lived in the general DC area for the past 8 years now. Noonan was also in the midst of a spiritual reconsideration during the period she writes about, which I also find easily relatable: doing the math, she was age 43 when the book came out, and I'm age 44 now, so its not surprising I'm finding myself nodding and drawing a number of parallels to many things she mentions that I wasn't doing to nearly the same extent when I read it in my 20s. I hope some of her later works have a similar personal/observational touch to them, but I haven't had a chance to explore them yet.

"Pearl Harbor: Warning and Decision" (Roberta Wohlstetter, 1962) - I'm only just into Chapter 1 in this one as well, but I already have a sense of "the scales falling from my eyes." This book is universally regarded as the definitive analysis of the intelligence failures that led to the attack on Pearl Harbor. In some ways its unbelievable, yet at the same time entirely believable, that the work of pulling together all the different sources of material to put together a coherent picture of 'who knew what, when did they know it, and how did it all fit together?' was done not by the Navy, but by an analyst at the RAND corporation. As a study of military history, its interesting; as a study of human nature, its deeply fascinating. There was an immensely complex lattice of 'this person knew this piece of information, but because they were in position A reporting from country B with perspective C, this other person in position X in country Y with perspective Z who could have acted on it wasn't disposed to think it that important.' And so catastrophes happen.

21st July 2014

9:36pm: Super Bowl XV - a retrospective
crossposted from http://www.wingheads.com/index.php?showtopic=75340

For a slow week before camp opens, found this on YouTube, the highlights of Super Bowl XV:
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In any case, the 1980 team will always be "my" team, probably to the end of my days. Coach Dick Vermeil remained a positive role model for me during the rest of my time growing up, both as an example of the value of hard work and preparation, and then as an example of how a lack of balance in one's life can lead to burnout.

6th July 2014

8:49pm: Tohno

29th June 2014

12:32pm: Motivation
Philosophy of motivation, from "Secret Society of Super Villains #1":

Also reflects the Lazarus Long quote about "Never appeal to a man’s “better nature.” He may not have one. Invoking his “self—interest” gives you more leverage."

26th June 2014

8:25pm: Oingo Boingo - Just Another Day


Lyrics: http://www.lyricsfreak.com/o/oingo+boingo/just+another+day_20102758.html

Trivia: OB's lead vocalist was Danny Elfman, now famous as the composer of such film scores as The Nightmare Before Christmas and the Simpsons theme.

29th April 2014

9:44pm: Newstopia intros

15th November 2013

7:54pm: Ever encounter a piece of art or song that you found particularly moving or meaningful, only to read an interview with the artist later where they said effectively "That piece of junk? Yeah, big mistake, never going to do that again!" or "It was *meant* to be a joke (and the fans didn't get it)." Did knowing that its creator regards it as garbage affect how you viewed it going forward?

6/14 - ...and there's actually a trope for this: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/OldShame

12th July 2013

6:22pm: RSS feeds for Twitter
Twitter finally shut down their support for RSS feeds (the things readers like Feedly use) last month. This is a workaround:
http://www.labnol.org/internet/twitter-rss-feeds/27931/

23rd December 2012

7:26am: Putting mass shooting deaths in perspective
According to the CDC, there are ~2.5 million deaths in the U.S. annually. In 2012, 151 of those deaths were due to mass shooters, or 0.00006% of all deaths or 0.009% of all homicides. So this rates as a major issue requiring large-scale deployment of resources and training...why again, exactly? The odds of being killed by lightning are about the same as that of falling victim to a mass shooter, yet we aren't talking about mass deployment of lightning rods across the nation.
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