Friday, July 28, 2006

Discussing musical taste, that is whether someone has good musical taste or not, led to a slight disagreement this evening. I would tend to be more inclusive in defining someone's musical taste. For instance, in addition to such obvious things such as music purchased, music played and music shared with friends, I believe that songs one chooses to sing at home, out of the view of the public but in the presence of roommates or family, should also be included. The manner of such singing, and if there is also dancing, could also be considered. What do you think?
*WARNING - Hex Spoiler*

Last night I tuned BBC America for Hex and found out Cassie had died. I swear I caught the episode last week but did not remember losing the main character. I immediately zapped into on demand just be sure, and yes, the last episode showing up was #6, the one I'd watched. I sulked a bit and decided I must have missed it and they were just slow to put up the next episode. I checked back later and found out they'd put up last night's episode, #8. Same thing today, episodes #6 and #8. I feel so betrayed. I haven't felt like this since I was a kid and somehow skipped the whole Gandalf dying in Moria scene and found out he was dead when I opened the next book. I cried that time. This time I wasn't sad (she could be so mean to Thelma) just angry with Comcast or BBC America or whoever blew the surprise for me. I expected some commiseration from Alan but he already knew she was going to die having read all the episode summaries on some website or other. What's the fun of that? And why the hell am I getting so hyped up about a consistently inconsistent show I know is already cancelled without a nice series wrap up at the end?

Thursday, July 27, 2006

This new job is going to do wonders for my writing discipline. With the way my schedule is structured, I need to lose a few hours each week during the day and have been alternating camping out at the two nearby coffee houses. And, in case I ever entertain the unproductive idea that I will work at my desk (not just catch up on blogs and news), overcrowding has someone needing to use my computer, desk or chair any time I'm away from my desk for more than ten minutes. I've been avoiding the heat by heading out early to make use of their free air conditioning, too. This week has taught me that although I think I can get writing done at home, I'm really just treading water since they're too many distractions.

About the new job... I'm about one week into it and am loving the work. I'm coordinating volunteers part-time for the local humane society shelter, a position that draws on my weird assortment of past volunteer and work experiences. It's amazingly close to home and I can keep my low paid but promising job with the start up company while having a steady paycheck during our slow season. Best of all, it's so good to be working in an animal shelter again.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

We're back from Readercon and post Readercon activities. The air is hot and dry, our house is almost unbearable and all the lawns are getting crispy, a very different situation from water-logged Massachusetts. We lost a kitchen chair and one of my sandals which is pretty good considering I didn't have as much time to puppy proof things as I would have liked. The sandal must have been hiding deep underneath a chair or the couch. The poor chair broke at some point, then was yanked apart and then chewed. We think the dog jumped on it to get to a cat although the pulling apart could have happened first. It was the chair facing out into the room under the table and thus more accessible than the others. I did also get the good news that I have a second interview for an interesting job tomorrow morning.

Readercon was fun and mellow with lots of interesting people. It suffered a little from its lack of parties, although that didn't stop us from making use of the Irish pub in the hotel. Oh yes, we spent way too much time in that bar. A desperate search for brunch one morning led a mtoley crew of us to a strange meal amidst birthday partying kids and jungle noises in the nearby mall's Rainforest Cafe. I enjoyed readings by Brett Cox, Paul Park, Patrick O'Leary, Jeff Ford and others. I'm still a little brain dead, so you'll have to excuse me if I forgot yours. The most memorable reading was for Twenty Epics which my husband hijacked to read an excerpt from the stories of everyone who wasn't present. I almost died during his rendition of David Schwartz's story because at times he sounded more like my Aunt Joyce than David doing his great uncle's accent. If you'd like to hear it for yourself, you just need to buy him a shot and hand him a copy of the book. Although I hit more programming than I ever have since my first convention, I only caught one half of two different panels because I had to sneak out to readings I promised I'd attend. I missed guest of honor James Morrow completely and only heard a few words from China Mieville one of them being, "tentacular" a great, great word. Sometime during one of "let's do shots" periods in the bar (I stayed with beer) we started up the "which SF author would you do" thing that was first played during the DC World Fantasy, I think. I had to pull in Lauren, who had just been voted onto the island, to balance out the mostly male, mostly gay panel because they kept vetoing the inclusion of guys with pony tails. If you want more details than that, you'll have to buy me a cider.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

We're back from my parent's cabin a day early so we can do some work around the house. It was a glorious, long weekend and Gambit's first visit. He got to explore the woods, swim as much as he wanted to and take his first boat ride. He was very well behaved and we're pleased to have a dog we can actually swim with instead of having to watch for claws and fend off attempts to climb onto us. He's very fast and can beat me in a flat out race, although he has a tendency to keep circling back to cut me off and make my front crawl into a much slower breaststroke. There was very little barking, which with the swimming, helped win my dad over. The last few years with our old dog had involved lots of senile barking at anything that moved including every boat passing on a busy lake. Gambit's passed out next to me on the couch right now and the cats are having a little peace because he's so tired.

Being Wisconsin, where these things are legal, we had lots of fireworks. They've done amazing things for the home market and we had couple nights of professional quality shows from different cabins. It was a beautiful sight from the boat after dark and at one point there were alternating explosions from both sides of the lake. I was going to bring Mentos and Diet Coke to duplicate Greg's experiment for our fireworks but didn't need to and will save that for a weekend when we have kids at the cabin.

There were all these new buoys around the lake which my dad said were marking Eurasian milfoil outbreaks. People raced right by them ignoring the problem and chewing up the plants to spread them to other places. Lake residents formed a lake district over the last two years and have gotten funding to work on the problem, but it's going to be an ongoing thing. Once it's in the lake, it's there for good, I guess, and it still might get completely out of control ending up stifling all the native life. The other big topic was the number of large muskie on the lake and the lack of the smaller northerns. Muskie don't bite very often while northerns do so the fishing has changed. We had a number of boats just off the point by our dock saying they were tracking some huge fish on their radars there. The water gets really deep fast and a couple times I wondered what was sharing the water with me. Muskies were always the monsters of legend on our lake.