[insert title here]

Friday, April 10, 2009

10:14AM - Because I don't stick out enough already

I've been having a hankering for some unnatural hair color for some time now, and I think electric red is going to be the way to go - when it fades, it will fade back to the semi-natural copper that I like to keep my hair (when I'm remembering to touch up the henna), but it's bright and unnatural enough to show up on top of my dishwater-light-brown-dyed-copper-red hair.

So I've already decided on using Special Effects Nuclear Red hair dye. Here's my question for the viewing audience:
Do I bleach the front hanks of hair before dying or no?
+Upside: Really f-ing bright red hair right next to my face for maximum contrast and awesome value.
-Downside: I'll have to get some brown henna and tone them back down next time I henna to get them back to a semi-natural color.
-+Downside/upside: This will make the front hanks kind of dried out and unhappy, but there are conditioning treatments for this, and it will mean that they will also be extra-curly until I get them conditioned back to normal.

Weigh in, oh crazy friends of mine. Remember, it's grad school, so looking "professional" is quite relative.

Current mood: chipper

(6 apples |pluck me)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


^ There is a scan there of a book. A thing that got published.
It defies description. Just click and read. And prepare to weep.

(13 apples |pluck me)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

11:58AM - Organizational dorkiness

I was reading a thread on meal planning, and I felt the need to add my. . . let's say five bucks.

There are a few reasons that kept popping up for why people don't like to do the weekly meal planning thing.

1. It's expensive because I buy all this stuff and it doesn't take into account what's on sale!
-Pull up your grocery store's weekly circular online the day you're putting the menus together and going shopping.
-When I don't plan, it regularly results in us ordering pizza or last-minute grocery runs. Add in (a) how much you're spending at the work cafeteria/nearby fast food, (b) pizza orders, (c) gas and grocery costs for those last-minute grocery runs. Now does it seem cheap?

2. But I never want to cook when I get home!
-Is this lack of desire to cook due to "what are we having for dinner?" syndrome? Would it be easier to cook if you have something planned out?
-If you're genuinely exhausted at the end of the day, plan around that. Make slow-cooker meals that involve work in the morning instead of the evening. Prep ahead so that you aren't chopping three onions at 7 pm. I generally pick dinners that are either ready straight out of the slow-cooker or only involve a little work (stir-fries, baked chicken with a salad and/or easy side).

3. It's so much work!
-Yeah, it is, and this is why I still don't do it every week. I'm considering it an accomplishment when I do it every other week. It's work, but it means that we save money, eat better, and have tastier food during the week. What's not to like?

My comment to the Unclutterer entry is under the cut; it includes my Sunday (shopping-day) schedule for an ideal week when I actually get this done.
Read more...Collapse )

Current mood: dorky

(5 apples |pluck me)

Monday, February 16, 2009

11:56AM - more notes to self:

Watching more than a couple minutes of the Jabbawockeez is kind of dangerous right now. It makes me really want to dance, which results in me going "Owie, knee not OK yet, owie, owie."
It's not that dancing itself is painful, it's that it's painful to support my body weight on bent knees and probably unwise to do spins, and for those of you that know how I dance. . . that kind of decimates my usual repertoire.

This also renders unsafe Atmosphere, Brother Ali, The Tea Party, Chris Cornell, Snake River Conspiracy, Sister Machine Gun, a substantial portion of Tori Amos. . .

Where are my titanium joints? Where are my cybernetic parts? Where is that awesome future I was promised? Also, while you're looking for it, could you keep an eye out for jetcars? Thanks.

Current mood: dancey

(2 apples |pluck me)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

10:48AM - Stuff 'n' stuff.

First order of business:
Yeah. Stop being true, graph. It's annoying.
I love you, kitty. I love your piles of vomit much less.

Second order of business:
It's really icy out. I went skidding sideways directly into traffic while taking a corner on my bike (even going much slower than usual). Thankfully, the nice pickup behind me was going slowly and managed to stop with a few feet to spare. Also, I am thankful that I have not ruined yet another pair of jeans, though I'm not sure about the socks yet (they may blossom with holes once they've gone through the wash).
Glad I'm OK, irritated by the terrible state of the roads.

Third order of business:
It's gonna be my birthday soon! No, I still haven't figured out what I want to do for it, probably throw a party. Still not a big fan of bars, sorry.
For any who wish, standard gift wish list is under the cut. For everybody else, I want a hug!
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OK, for some of you, hugs are actually kind of expensive, giving the transportation costs to Seattle. So you should save them up and give them to me next time we're in the same ZIP code.

Much love,

Current mood: chipper

(2 apples |pluck me)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


To paraphrase Wm Shakespeare, "Sleep knits up the raveled sleeve of care."
Maybe. In most cases. Not so much for Macbeth. Or for me today, it seems.

I woke up anxious and have spent much of the day with all the physical symptoms of being suffused with nameless dread. I've been doing an OK job of letting the physical symptoms be there but not get too terribly freaked out by them. It's still a losing battle, unfortunately, but I think I may be able to hold most of my ground until I can get home and have a nice hard workout and/or [censored] my cares away.

This sleep is not that which knits up the raveled sleeve of care. It sets badgers on it and then starts running after it with scissors.

Current mood: jazzy

(2 apples |pluck me)

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Am trying to decide if I feel slightly crappy because I (a) am succumbing to stomach nastiness or (b) spent all yesterday evening being boiled alive in erragal's apartment. In either case, tea is helping. Then again, tea almost always helps.

In other news, am now on track again, and data is interesting. On the other hand, actually presenting it in a readable fashion will still be a total bitch and I have not successfully figured out how to present it yet. All in time, all in time.

In yet other news, tea is awesome. AWESOME!
And I am caffeinated.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.

(pluck me)

Monday, January 26, 2009


Sooooo. . . lab meeting today.
Quick summary: highly productive and intensely embarrassing.

I have been barking up completely the wrong tree for the last, oh, two months or so. Son of a bad man, expletive deleted, etc.
Not utterly the wrong tree, mind you, but it's rather like being in the middle of pruning and shaping the Japanese Dwarf Maple in the front yard and being told that, no, you were supposed to prune and shape the red oak in the back yard. Yes, the one that you can see from the front of the house, that one.

Note to self: bug P.I. on weekly basis to discuss progress, even when it feels like there is none and you have to hunt him down using radio collars and the help of native guides. Tranq darts are currently overkill, but will be used when I have gone more than two weeks without a meeting.

So. . . current analysis goes to back burner, new analysis goes to defcon 2. I still want to complete the analysis that I have been working on, and current analysis will help a great deal in new analysis, but new analysis will be my bestest and most belovedest friend for the next two weeks. Ack.

I know what my weekends are looking like for the next while.

Current mood: embarrassed

(4 apples |pluck me)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Friday, January 23, 2009


To those who have been reading Penny Arcade this week, riddle me this:

Also, how long until somebody actually does make this movie?
'Cause seriously, after Twilight, I am beginning to believe that for every bad fanfiction, there is a producer coked-up enough to think it's a great idea to make a movie out of it.

Also? Weregeek.

Current mood: confused

(1 apple |pluck me)

Monday, January 19, 2009


I've been feeling under the weather again the last few days, and I wasn't sure if it was the doom allergies attacking again or a cold. Still don't know, still not all better. Stomach has been cross with me, so I decided to try a new method of ginger delivery; instead of eating candied ginger, I brewed tea.

Specifically approximately a thumb of ginger, sliced, and some honey, steeped in two cups hot water for ten minutes. My mouth and belly are pleasantly warm, and I feel much better.

Unfortunately, Jon can smell my ginger breath from a meter away, despite a very recent tooth-brushing. It is apparently somewhere on the border of appalling and suffocating. If we die of ginger fumes in the night, know that we loved you. Also know that it wasn't intentional, simply an accident.
A tasty, tasty accident.

I'm going to go rebrew the slices now. This is delicious.

Current mood: gingered and warm

(1 apple |pluck me)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

10:18AM - Rings as talismen

There are definitely days when I can understand the whole "homosexual marriage threatens heterosexual marriage" deal. It's magical thinking, illogical but comforting. It needs to be awesome and special for the spell to work. When relationships fall apart and I don't know why and I can't help and I can't fix things, it makes me want this ring to be a talisman. Over the last couple of years, I've felt this a lot. I want this ring to mystically protect us from all the petty insults and missed opportunities and martyr moments. I want this ring to somehow seal us into that happy moment and save us from the world, save us from our own changing nature, save us from doubt and hurt and all the slings and arrows of human relationships.

Unfortunately, this mystical thinking is even less useful than "if the covers are over my head, the monsters under the bed won't eat me." At least with the covers over my head, I got forced out for fresh air eventually.

I wish I had a teleporter. I wish that I could be where you are, right now, with a kitty and a blanket and a bowl of soup and a shoulder to cry on and some ice cream. I wish so much that I could hold you and make it all better. But this blasted "technology" hasn't caught up with science fiction yet, more's the pity, so I'll just make do with cell phones.

So, I'm updating the resolutions.
1. Update my rotating contact list and actually contact a couple of people a week (minimum), via phone, email, letter, or carrier pigeon.
2. Use time otherwise spent visiting gossip blogs to do other things (like the above) that enrich my life.
3. Do something loving for my lover every single day. Love can't be kept inside, it has to be given.

As Pastor Amy loves to say:
"The world is too dangerous for anything but truth and too small for anything but love." - William Sloane Coffin

(15 apples |pluck me)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

4:24PM - Yay kind of day.

So. . .
-Cinder went to the vet and didn't even foul his carrier at any point. Also (and more importantly), he's doing really well. The vet is keeping him on 1 u of insulin to see if his blood sugar stabilizes further from diet alone. Yay!
-I presented at journal club, and I think I did pretty well. It's a dense paper and has some major flaws, but the work is interesting and very provacative.
-Class went well. I feel like I'm really starting to get the hang of this TAing thing. Also, my class is generally enthused and somewhat silly. I told them to use the photobooth function on my computer to take pictures so I could memorize their names -- half of them are pulling funny faces or giving each other bunny ears. We may all grow older, but some of us never grow up.

Current mood: charmed

(2 apples |pluck me)

Thursday, January 1, 2009

5:39PM - And I spoke too soon. . .

2009 is looking to be really interesting already. How interesting? Diabetic cat interesting.

Yes, he's fine (for the moment). A blood glucose of 378 on admittance (normal is 71-159), has had a dose of insulin and will be seeing the vet ASAP tomorrow. He's actually pretty OK, a touch sedated, still damp from subcutaneous fluids, but bright-eyed, moving easily, and not into ketosis.

Poor baby. I'm just glad that this happened when we got back, not right when we left.

Current mood: worried

(9 apples |pluck me)


It's been an eventful year and a very ordinary year.
Lockport with the family was wonderful. Perhaps more on that later.
I rang in the Armenian new year with labmates and some wonderful Armenian cognac of the boss's, yesterday around noon PST. We rang in our new year with friends and pizza and board games and champagne; I will consider this a good trend for the rest of the year.

I have a couple resolutions that I want to follow through with, so in the interest of upping my chances of success through public accountability, here they are:
1) Finish setting up my rotating contact file of friends and acquaintances (by 15 Jan), and regularly contact the people in it.
2) Check the news or be productive instead of checking celebrity gossip blogs. I do not need to know what Britney Spears is doing, really.

I hope that everybody has had a lovely new year, and I hope that we all will have a better 2009 than 2008. Onwards and upwards!

(2 apples |pluck me)

Friday, December 19, 2008


How are you gentlemen.
All your forthcoming bone fractures are belong to us.

This has been an interesting day. Yesterday was a snow day, so not much got done other than putzing around the apartment and reading.
Biking into work today was . . . interesting. I was exceedingly grateful for my mountain bike, as the one poor bastard on a racing bike that I saw was pedaling along at approximately a walking pace. All the motorists were reasonable, but the bike path and bike lanes were still covered in uneven and crunchy ice/snow. The traction was actually pretty decent, but there's nothing quite like getting jogged around from rut to rut while you attempt to steer and are utterly stymied from doing so.

And then I got here and realized that I'd left my keys in my other coat. I guess I should be grateful that there weren't many people here; enough that somebody was present to let me into the lab, few enough that I could park my bike inside the lab without being in anybody's way.

Also, it's totally time for a new chair. My tailbone is killing me, and my lower back isn't too happy either. The BackJoy still isn't working for squat, so it's officially time to return it and attempt another strategy.

Current mood: amused

(pluck me)

Sunday, December 14, 2008


ow. OW.
I got some little thing to sit on that's supposed to be better for my back and reduce the tension. I'm thisclose to freaking out because it felt better for the first five minutes and despite constant readjustment has gotten my back to the point that I want to scream in pain. I'm returning it tomorrow ASAP.

In better/weirder news, I've decided to make some attempts to train Cinder. Cats are trainable, after all, like pretty much all vertebrate animals, it's just that they're less inclined than dogs are. So, downside, Jon gets to listen to my attempts. Upside, I get to be amused by my attempts and Cinder potentially gets more exercise. Potentially.
Progress so far: Cinder looks at me with an even weirder expression than usual when I talk in his direction. I'm not sure that this is actually progress.

In actually good news:
Allergy treatment really seems to be working. I'm feeling like ass much less frequently than before, and when I do it's usually attributable to not actually taking my medication. *is ashamed* But healthy! Yay!
The 'rents got me a HEPA filter for the holidays, because I ask for boring presents. It seems to be working.

Classes are finished, and I did well in the one graded course I took. I'm still not entirely sure about the class I taught, but it was a learning experience.

Jon's dad got us a Belgian waffle maker, one of those that flips over so it makes really fluffy waffles. On one hand, bulky and kind of difficult to store. On the other hand, so very very delicious that it's tempting to have some for a snack. I am resisting. I may need to figure out a good lower-fat and higher in whole grain recipe that actually tastes good. This may call for a vegan cookbook.

I got Jon a kung fu type shirt and he looks really really really good in it. That man is surprisingly good at pulling off a long straight silhouette and a mandarin collar. Now to make him one in every color. Or something.

And my husband loves me very much and wants me to flunk out of grad school. He got me the complete Buffy box set. It's forty DVDs. It's like I can feel my productivity draining away, only to be replaced by amusement and Joss Whedon. It's an interesting feeling.

Happy Gift-mas everybody! (now to actually finish my holiday shopping.)

(6 apples |pluck me)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

3:23PM - spider dreams.

So I have these things I call "spider dreams," where I have a dream that the bed or the wall or the pillow is covered in thousands of tiny swarming spiders (or occasionally biting ants) and I wake up from a sleep in a total panic. After years of sleeping in the same bed as Jon, I've gotten marginally better about the panic, climbing out of bed carefully and running my hands over the surface in question as opposed to the previous response, springing out of bed gibbering and yelling and then turning the light on and freaking out in the general direction of my recently-sleeping bedmate. I blame this phenomenon partly on the summer of the roaches, where I regularly woke up to see Mr. Roach inspecting my bedside table or just staring me down from the chair-rail above my bed. It's also a stress thing, as Jessie pointed out to me a while back (Maybe I should sleep on the couch during the two weeks leading up to my general exam). And apparently, it's not uncommon.

I just thought to myself, "Wow, I haven't had a spider dream in months! And it's been a somewhat stressful quarter."

This was immediately followed by, "And now I jinxed myself."

I'm tempted to bet somebody dollars to donuts that I'll have one tonight, but (1) I doubt any of you would take me up on it and, (2) if I'm right, Jon will kill me for encouraging it. That is, assuming that he has the energy to kill me at four in the morning immediately after being roused from a sound sleep.

Current mood: whoops!

(7 apples |pluck me)

9:28AM - I will never be clean again.

When Jon got home last night, the hallway from the bedroom to the bathroom was flooded. There's an exposed pipe that goes from the top of the wall to the edge of the ceiling in the hallway, and it was dripping. Over the course of the next two hours of trying to get ahold of the landlord, the water accelerated and started to also come from the ceiling next to the pipe, the wall under the pipe, and the hallway light fixture. By the time the landlord arrived, we had a stockpot full of yellow water and a rice cooker (6 qt) liner a third full of yellow water. Jon had made a valiant attempt to sop up the water with towels, but since it seemed to do nothing to decrease the squishiness of the carpet, he soon gave up. I also had a go at it for a while. After wringing out a beach towel 8-10 times, my hands were starting to feel raw and the carpet was still squishy.

The landlord called back and said a roofer was scheduled to come by tomorrow, maybe it was the roof?
We are in a basement apartment which is gaining water at a rate of a few gallons an hour. We told him we didn't think it would last 'til morning and probably wasn't the roof.

By the time the landlord showed up, there was a giant blister of water under the paint in the wall containing around a cup of water. It was slowly creeping down, leaving a trail of deformed paint in its wake. The light fixture was dripping at a rapid rate and the pipe was essentially drooling a constant stream of yellow water. The plumber couldn't even get to the apartment before midnight, so our landlord turned off all the water. Thankfully, this solved the problem within an hour or so. Unfortunately, this means no morning shower for me this morning, and I only was able to wash my hands once using the residual water in the system. I've been on campus less than an hour and I've already washed my hands three times.

The plumber is there now, trying to fix things and turning the water back on. I have no idea what the apartment will look like when I get home; I'm trying not to think about it. Given the fact that the water was colored, it looks like I'm going to be renting a carpet shampooer yet again.

When we move out, our landlord doesn't get to say boo about the condition of our carpets. This is the second time in a year that something has flooded and absolutely soaked our carpets.

Current mood: aggravated

(11 apples |pluck me)

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