May. 16th, 2002 11:50 am
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World Wide Woodchuck Wrestling (Federation?)

A cow orker just pointed out a pair of woodchucks wrestling outside our window...
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After four weeks of unproductive negotiations, odd-numbered pages appear ever more likely to walk out of their bindings. A strike is now imminent. "Uneven pages are every bit as reliable as their even counterparts," a demoralized spokespage told the med ia, reiterating his constituents' desire to distance themselves from the troublesome connotations of their traditional moniker, "odd." Meanwhile, publishers hasten to roll out reprinted volumes of the latest bestsellers in even-only editions, while authors, particularly left-handed authors, stand firmly behind the afflicted. "Some of my best pages are uneven," said one popular novelist who wished to remain anonymous..
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(Now I should put two more lines
to make a haiku.)

Yet another physical therapy session this afternoon. I was a bit concerned - I seem to have done more than I should've yesterday - my finger was tired. Even so, everyone was impressed with how much of a fist I can make... the new stretch-the-finger splint I was to have gotten has been nixed :-). Instead, I got a new piece of equipment, plastic and rubberbands, that makes me think I should be shooting staples out of it. This is for building up strength. And when she saw how much I'd done with the green silly putty, she got out the blue stuff, for only some of the exercises, though - this stuff is hard. She said she only expects to give this color "to construction workers" - time to go out and get some muscle shirts... The doctor came by and looked at what I could do, then said I was getting to the end. I was surprised - last I'd heard it was still "early days!" I think there's still a ways to go, but perhaps it's stuff I'll mostly be doing on my own. (If only he tells me I can bike....)
(End of the handy stuff.)

I had an artichoke before therapy. I realized that what I so like about it is not quite its flavor, but that it causes a kind of tingle in my mouth that nothing else does, almost as if it were just the beginning of numbness. My favorite thistle...

[Driving home, there was a truck that had "New England Home Exercises" on it.... I'd like to get my living room some stretches, please, so I can fit some more people in it. And if the floors had more strength training in their routine, perhaps I could put in some more bookshelves.... :-)]


May. 10th, 2002 10:49 am
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Somehow this always sounds like either sandals or some Israeli vegetarian patty.


May. 9th, 2002 02:58 pm
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A cow orker said something about a "big honking book," and all I could think about was a manual for geese, which really would have to be relatively small for geese to be able to use them... ("Honking for Dummies"?)

Artichokes are not designed to be breakfast food: though they taste lovely, they take too long to eat and are not filling enough (guess how I figured this out?).

Talking earlier with a (different) cow orker about LASIK eye surgery. My mom has intermittently suggested I get this done. I'm still not sure. Part of it is not knowing what the long term prospects are (OK, and the idea of someone messing with my eyes is scary).
Some of my reluctance is bizarre psychological stuff: I keep finding myself unsure I want to give up the blurry world that is mine when I don't have correction. Seems stupid, but I wonder if I could fall asleep if the world were still un-fuzzy. It's a declaration in the morning when I put on my glasses that I'm ready to face the day. I find it interesting to be able to see the world with (literally) 2 different perspectives: I see things differently, and it reminds me how many different ways there are to see the same things.
(I've always thought a great exhibit at a science museum would give people the chance to see the world not only near- and far-sighted (different levels) and astigmatized (I am so sure that's not the right word.), but also with different kinds of color blindness, and how different animals see (think of fly eyes...))

Note to self: at a certain point, the curry powder does not change the food's color any more. This does not mean that adding more will not make it spicier...

Bird sighting: there are cardinals outside my window (not the kind with the red beanies, the kind that are red all over (no, not the newspaper! (can you tell I've gotten silly this afternoon?)(this squadron of embedded parens tries to emerge from the bedding, and fails completely. Perhaps tomorrow ...)))



May. 9th, 2002 01:39 pm
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Yesterday at work, I got an upgrade of Word (Not that I asked for one or anything. And not that they offer any training, even of the "Here's a document showing the major differences" sort.).

Today I'm trying to figure out which new, updated cute icon means "insert text box," and I go looking through all the options available under customizing my toolbar.

And in there, there's an option I've never heard of before: InsertSpike.

Hmmm. Is this something to do with cooking? (thinking of [livejournal.com profile] pheromone's avocado dip)
Something to do with building railroads?

I haven't yet figured out what it does in Word, though... (OK, not that I actually tried the command, either.)
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So if there are pronouns, where are all the amateur nouns?


May. 3rd, 2002 07:24 pm
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Highly productive afternoon: not only have I cooked (or am cooking... down to the wire today) tons of food, I had a session with the physical therapist (got to make a bracelet), and got my car inspected! I actually drove, and it felt fine :-) (driving freedom! less imposition on people! now if I can only start biking...)

Noticed for the first time a street sign that says "Slow Blind Hill". Hmmmm.

On "All Things Considered" tonight (their 31st bday), they had Poetry Boot Camp, which was very funny. It included:
(barked out, sergeant-style) "Describe Kipling!"
"I can't say, sir, I've never kippled."
"Then give me 10 Emily Dickinsons!"
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(from the newsletter today.... I keep finding this stuff irresistible...)

Spring brings out the worst in verbs, pronouns swear -- but of course
pronouns tend to generalize. (It's safe to say that subjects wouldn't have
dared threaten secession from predicates prior to the last election without
years of goading from an unforgiving, vocal pronoun minority.)
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I had to read the glossary of Words Into Type, a useful book that hasn't been updated since 1974 (and it shows, in the glossary terms...).

There were a few interesting items.

Pieces of (metal) type for printing used to be kept in cases. The earliest cases had two levels... which is why capitals are "uppercase" and the rest are "lowercase". And if a box doesn't have any type left in it, it's "out of sorts." (there, there.)

"Calender" may usually be a typo, but it is a word on its own, too, meaning to make paper smooth and glossy by passing through rollers.

"Fluent" has an alternate meaning: it's the integral symbol!

"Emage" is not an online wizard, but the area of text measured in terms of ems of its type size (ie, em-age, not e-mage. not something I'd use now...).

And the reason "leading" is pronounced "ledding" is because the strips of metal used to separate lines of type were called leads.

We now return you to your usual, typographically normal program...

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A line that read "Simplify each ratio." in one round of proof somehow became
"implify each ratio."

So of course I imagine the ratio with pointy ears and a long pointy tail...

[rant] There are far too many really horrible things on these pages, things that shouldn't be wrong, that were right last time around, and it's late in the game, too, too late for major screw uppage... [/rant]≤
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from Donald Murray's article in today's Boston Globe:
I once heard Grace Paley say, ''We write about what we don't know about what we know.'' Exactly. Writing isn't writing what we know but what we don't know we know until we write it. Writing is t hinking, exploration, discovery, and surprise.

I find his articles are usually a lovely essay to read, a short piece that often makes me think, or look at things differently.

In another article, a review of a show coming to the Coolidge Corner Theater t hat's all in Yiddish, there was mention of instant translation on a screen, dubbed "Yid-o-Matic." hmmmm....

The lake had mist rising from it this morning, making me think how easy it would be for this to make people more likely to believe in magic. Some thing about seeing it from the highway, though, kept it from going from beautiful landscape to magical this morning.
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i'm always entertained by their newsletter.

"PowellsBooks.news proudly features only the finest letters, raised with love on our organic alphabet farm in the foothills just west of the City. Fresh punctuation, shipped directly from the adjoining syntax annex, makes each edition an important part of our readers' nutritional regimen."

"Cats eat birds to swallow song"
(great 2nd line for a haiku...)

and it tickles me that the second best selling book this week was the phantom tollbooth.

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i'd been feeling low about the lack of cooking veggies in my life (note to self: remember this the next time i bitch about veggie prep.), esp onions, for some reason.

so tonight, i managed, using the left elbow and some large onions, to chop onions! large dice, but still exciting to me (lord, my life is so small sometimes...). not only that, i sauteed them, and have a weird passover permutation of lasagna (no soft cheese, none of the right spices, no veggies but onion & crushed tomatoes...) in the oven.

boggle words of the day: OVOIDS and CRESSET

[insert total goofiness here. then pretend you don't notice it. oops! there it goes now! nope, it's behind you again! ok. i knew there'd be a good use for that decorated tin sometime. just remember NOT TO OPEN IT!]

read an ebook (novel?) last night, which felt more like a bunch of interconnected vignettes about bizarre characters in the not-so-distant future, all around the playing of icehouse, the author had fun intertwining the different pieces in different ways; in the end, it felt like he just ended his playtime with that universe of characters, rather than coming to any sort of resolution. but the odd characters were fun, anyway.

tonight is the 5th night of the omer.

i was talking with a cow orker about suicide bombers, and he pointed out that there are now women (well, at least one woman) who do this. we talked about how some brainwashing of the rank and file must go on to get people to do this, and i mentioned the 7 virgin brides muslim martyrs get in heaven (he said it's 70). so, what about women? neither of us knew, but we both wondered if this meant there was an added incentive for lesbian muslims...
(i know, this is totally in poor taste, in tons of ways. i just can't seem to face the news straight (sic) on, anymore.)
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who knew that april 2 is... pb&j day!

right during passover this year, i'm sure not to be celebrating properly. though with my non-preference for pb, i probably wouldn't've done much, anyway.

interestingly, according to the globe citing a smucker's survey, most people like their pb&j sandwiches cut on the diagonal. and grape jelly is most favored (all i think of is those purpled sandwiches kids pulled out at lunchtime in grade school, jelly having taken over one slice of bread. i didn't like the looks of those.). and 62% prefer white bread.

[seems like i should put a poll in here. but i leave that for someone else.]

favorite phrase from this morning's news: "statistically undead"
(from a discussion about census stuff. but i could see some great other discussions.
"just got my numbers back from the doctor, and now i'm more than 73% undead. maybe if i exercise more..."
"look! there's joe's arm heading out for a midnight prowl! he must be, what, 40% undead now."
"bartender! give me a zombie!" "sorry, sir, i'll need to see some proof of undeadification first.")

(maybe i'll go back to index checking now... it is one of my least favorite tasks...)
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so to make devilled eggs (that would be "stuffed eggs" for any brits), take ouy the yolk, mush w/ mayo & mustard (latter optional), put back in the egg, paprika over the top.
so to make devil(led) dogs... take out the insides, mix w/ condiments....

to treat may mean to negotiate a treaty or other agreement, or pay for someone else's tab.
so why does to retreat not mean to do these things a 2nd time?

(and there was one more that came as i lay in bed last night. but now it's gone away. and i bet a bunch of people give a sigh of relief... :-)
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Our newsletter pauses to honor every brave, hardworking letter whose livelihood remains in jeopardy because of a despotic backspace key nearby.


Mar. 1st, 2002 11:35 am
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It sounds too much like a command to be a month name.


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