Previously, in Trip's Life...

31 October 2006 - Tuesday

Halloween! But it's not a full moon or anything cool like that.

* * *

I made a user happy today again, but otherwise, enh. I am mired in the hell of Unicode and character encodings. Plus, someone turned off the lights in the office and my aged eyestalks can't take the contrast anymore. I still have the black hat, but I guess I'm no longer a creature of Darkness.

* * *

No anime, but we had pumpkin with garlic yogurt sauce, and coq au vin, and leeks and brussels sprouts! Also I sat around and talked with Ayse and Marith while Ken lured Dave into the back room for unsavory purposes.

Anime next week, for sure!

* * *

Cats: Both cats were quite interested in the trick-or-treaters who knocked upon my door, but I cruelly thwarted them! I really don't think people would understand about the half-eaten princess deposited lovingly on my doorstep. Also, Dani sat in my lap for three hours so I couldn't stop reading The Android's Dream (John Scalzi).

Writing: check, amazingly enough.

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30 October 2006 - Monday

Thank you for helping me wake up, Marmalade, but you don't seem to have adjusted for the end of DST.

* * *

I made a user happy by fixing a problem, so although I am small-brained, I am not completely useless.

* * *

Cats: When Dani wants pettins, she comes and sits right next to the keyboard and rubs her cheek on my hands whenever I move them. When Marmalade wants pettins, he comes and stomps all over the computer desk card table and the keyboard, and headbutts my hands into the keys. Now you understand about my cats.

Writing: check.

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29 October 2006 - Sunday

I did almost nothing useful today, but that's okay. I have to be useful tomorrow.

* * *

Finished disc 1 of Now and Then, Here and There. Okay, there's a fair amount of doom.

* * *

Cats: Marmalade seemed to really like helping me make the bed, or at least he purred and purred while investigating the new bedclothes and getting sheets thrown over him and fiercely attacking my hand through the sheets. (I think that's his form of an alibi, since he doesn't treat hands like that normally. "I wouldn't bite your hand, Dad! I'm a good kitty! It must have been that mysterious blue lump in the sheet!")

Writing: check.

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28 October 2006 - Saturday

Marith and I made it to the post office just in time to get the "25-shiny-circles-for-$100" box from Right Stuf, so now I have a big stack of DVDs which I will use for EEEVIL!

* * *

Finally we have had the tapas planned for Ayse's and Cat's birthdays! Besides the birthday girls and their doe-eyed serving boys, Carl and Marith and Susan M and I were all there. We took over a big chunk of the back room at Iberia in Menlo Park, and took the menus hostage until they brought us bacon-wrapped dates, super-acidic smelt fillets, croquettes stuffed with ham and melted cheese, tiny cheese scones, spinach and chickpea goop, braised veal, garlic sausage on toast smothered in melted cheese, and many other fine Spanish bar snacks! Muahahahahaha!

There was much discussion of many things, including writing. I will die in a pit now.

* * *

Susan bailed on us to check whether her kids had eaten her husband, at which point some clever person noticed that we had exactly the Twelve Kingdoms group (minus Dave, who wasn't here on Wednesday anyway), so we caught up a bit. The two secondary protagonists have switched places, in a way.

Spoiler: <rot13> Nfnab'f qrenatrq oryvrs gung gur jbeyq bs gur Gjryir Xvatqbzf vf whfg n tnzr vfa'g gbb haernfbanoyr, fvapr gur Gjryir Xvatqbzf ner pyrneyl n fvzcyvsvrq qrevingvir bs gur erny jbeyq, jvgu qvivar svng fhofgvghgrq rireljurer zbqryvat gur erny ovbybtl/rpbabzvpf/rgp jbhyq or gbb zhpu jbex. RT, va g12X, n zneevrq pbhcyr jub yvir va qvssrerag gbjaf qba'g cebqhpr xvqf, ohg vg'f orpnhfr gur urniraf qral gurve erdhrfg sbe n onolsehvg, abg orpnhfr gurl cebonoyl nera'g fjnccvat rabhtu tnzrgrf. Ohg gurl fgvyy unir gur hetr gb qb jung jbhyq erfhyg va fjnccvat tnzrgrf va gur erny jbeyq, rira gubhtu vg'f cbvagyrff va g12X.

Naljnl, pna'g lbh whfg frr Xrvxv nf bar bs gur yvggyr nqivfbe thlf va Pvi? </rot13>

* * *

Cats: Still orange and furry!

Writing: check. Still lame.

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27 October 2006 - Friday

Much better than yesterday! I think I have a weasel to replicate the guy on another monkey, and am making progress toward porting the contents of the weasel.

* * *

Nothing happening tonight, so after sucking at Spaceward Ho! for a while, I watched the beginning of Now and Then, Here and There. Although I'm sure there's plenty of Japanese-schoolboy-sucked-into-alternate-dimension anime, it still feels like a gender-reversal. The main character is even inept yet genki! Plus mysterious girls, evil overlords (complete with base designed by Death Star Architects, Inc), all the good stuff.

I hear that it is full of doom later, but so far it's entertaining.

* * *

Cats: orange!

Writing: check.

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26 October 2006 - Thursday

Super-useless parasite.

* * *

I finally escaped Spaceward Ho! (I think I'm winning, although the stupid computer keeps exploding my colonies) and watched Munto. It had nice visuals and a nice soundtrack, but I don't think any of it rose above the level of "nice". On the other hand, it didn't require a lot of brain.

* * *

Cats: Orange as ever!

Writing: check.

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25 October 2006 - Wednesday

Aw! Cat became ill after escaping work, so there was no Twelve Kingdoms. Also, hardly any comics this week, so I am sad.

* * *

Cats: Not sick!

Writing: check.

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24 October 2006 - Tuesday

Yay powered armor! (Still need better energy storage, but that's true for most traditional SF gear.)

* * *

Ow, my brain.

* * *

Still no Tuesday Night Anime, so I bought shoes and tried the "Hawaiian Barbecue" place on the corner there. I did not try the spam sushi, but the chicken katsu was okay.

* * *

Spaceward Ho! is hard. There's some mistake I keep making early in the game that results in huge fleets of alien warships stomping all over me. There aren't that many variables that early on, so I must be doing something wrong with either expansion (expanding too fast? not colonizing the right planets?) or money management (not shuffling tech money to whatever I most need at the moment? not adjusting the savings/tech balance each turn?). Bah.

* * *

Argh, the book gnomes have stolen my copy of Rules of Conflict (Kristine Smith)!

* * *

Cats: Deeply interested in sitting on my keyboard!

Writing: check.

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23 October 2006 - Monday

HAPPY HAPPY AYSEDAY!!

* * *

I am victorious at Spaceward Ho! Take that, alien scum!

Now I make the aliens slightly smarter and try again.

* * *

Cats: Even more orange than that!

Writing: check.

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22 October 2006 - Sunday

Dim sum! We were delayed by Ken's raidmates being doofi, but no one starved, and there was a sufficiency of dim sum in due course.

We splorted around the coffee shop, but it was loud and hot and didn't have enough seating, so eventually we went to Book Buyers and then exploded in our separate directions. I got a bunch of Dunnett books, though!

* * *

After a couple of doomed failures, I think I've cranked down the level of opposition in Spaceward Ho! to where I can win. I'm not sure if I'll get any victory points for it, though, since I can't seem to find a listing of what difficulties I've won at before.

Die, alien scum! Die!

* * *

Cats: Cuddly!

Writing: check.

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21 October 2006 - Saturday

My weekend days seem to be falling into a pattern. I should do something about that, but I didn't do it today.

I did read City of Pearl and Crossing the Line (Karen Traviss). Although the first one can be read as anti-scientist, I think it's really supposed to be anti-corporate; it's just that all the corporate scum happen to be scientists. But I could be wrong. Anyway, they were entertaining enough that I'll probably buy the rest if I run across them.

* * *

Cats: Orange! And also, orange!

Writing: check.

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20 October 2006 - Friday

I have survived an entire week at Palmsource! Yay me!

I have not actually accomplished anything, although I have moved toward accomplishments. Boo me.

* * *

Exploding Eggplant for dinner! (It doesn't actually explode on the plate, but it has shrimps and ground pork and mushrooms to go with the eggplant, which seems like a fair trade, as well as being much less messy.)

* * *

Cats: Obviously quite busy and important!

Writing: check.

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19 October 2006 - Thursday

Argh. It didn't look that far on the map, but walking from the train station to the DMV was much too annoying (and required taking over the bike lane, since our corporate civic masters neglected to build sidewalks where I wanted to go) and I missed my appointment. Fortunately the wait for appointmentless losers wasn't too bad, and I made it in to work for an hour before being kidnapped to Taos lunch. When I got back, I got in another hour of work before having to try to sell a prospective Taos guy on the job I had at nVidia. I don't know if I succeeded, but perhaps I'll find out eventually.

Despite all the time wasted in travel, I did manage to put in a total of eight hours among my multiple allegiances, and there is a small chance that I will have my new ID card before I have persuade the Theater of Security Allegations to let me on a plane to Portland.

* * *

And I did laundry. I'm just a real powerhouse of accomplishment today.

* * *

Cats: Poor oppressed Marmalade! No sooner had he gotten comfy on the fresh warm laundry than he started sinking into the hamper because someone was swiping it out from under him! When he got tired of that and tried to nest on the pile of warm shirts, the same thing happened again! It's very hard being a cat, even when you have your own web page.

Writing: check.

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18 October 2006 - Wednesday

La la la productive member of society la la la.

* * *

We didn't manage to play Dragon-Blooded, but we did discuss converting characters to second edition, and there were saberteeths in Carcassonne.

* * *

Cats: Dani is on line!

Writing: check.

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17 October 2006 - Tuesday

Some nice person on Google Groups took pity on me and told me how to score a fresh copy of the archaic Trac version I'm working with, so I can compare it to the one I have. That's like progress!

* * *

Dave is off the continent, so no anime.

* * *

Cats: Orange!

Writing: check.

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16 October 2006 - Monday

First day of actual work at Palmsource. This would be going so much better if I hadn't stayed up so late.

* * *

Well, I spent eight hours poking at Trac with a pointy stick. That's like work, right?

Right?

* * *

Additional accomplishments today: None.

* * *

Cats: Orange and furry!

Writing: check.

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15 October 2006 - Sunday

Marithday, observed!

Marith wanted to show Ayse, Ken, Earl, and Cat the first episode of Princess Tutu, so she did! Then she wanted to go to Santa Cruz, so we took her! There was shopping and sitting around the Perg and then Ginormous Sushi of Doom! (Pesto sushi was not neglected!) Also, tempura bananas.

Apparently it was a satisfactory birthday event.

* * *

Because I am a huge moron, I failed to go to sleep when I went to bed and instead stayed up much too late rereading Monstrous Regiment, which I think is the darkest of all the Discworld books. But still very good.

* * *

Cats: Still orange, despite being left to fend for themselves all day!

Writing: check.

day observed! by marith (Tue Oct 17 09:54:05 2006)

It was a fine birthday event! Thank you!

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14 October 2006 - Saturday

I am a huge lame lamer, so I didn't make it to Christy's baby shower until it was almost over, but it seems to have been a pretty swell party. I saw Gretchen who isn't dead but does have hair, and Brad, and Ambar who is also not dead and even gets to sleep sometimes, and assorted Pettersons, and quite a few people I didn't know at all.

People are spawning!

* * *

Ambar gave me the paperwork that shows that Dani has parents and is not unusually likely to drop dead of heart disease. If I wanted, I could send a form to the International Cat Monitoring Conspiracy and tell them that Dani is now mine, not Ambar's. Perhaps I will get around to it sometime.

* * *

Marith came over to watch the last disc of Saiyuki Reload and got squished under every cat in the apartment! I guess she must be soft or warm or something.

* * *

Hm. This Spaceward Ho! game in a large circular galaxy is not going so well. I have run out of metal, which is mostly falling on the planets of my enemies, which hampers my ability to build fleets capable of winning battles (not to mention colony ships to allow recovery of metal fallen onto conquered planets). Well, at worst I will know next time to always build ships at the highest Miniaturization level I can.

* * *

Cats: All over Marith!

Writing: check.

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13 October 2006 - Friday

It's Friday the 13th. Time for meteors to strike Washington DC!

* * *

As I should probably have expected, the horrible Exchange-based thing isn't done. The WebDAV version is godawful slow for no apparent reason, and the OLE version still hangs. Bah!

Perhaps if Palmsource ever lets go of me, nVidia will try to get me back for a while, since they don't have any cycles to finish up.

* * *

Marith came over to cook some stuff for tomorrow's party, and also watch a not-very-good Saiyuki movie. There was cat-stompage.

* * *

Cats: They like Marith!

Writing: check.

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12 October 2006 - Thursday

Penultimate day at nVidia, and the horrible Exchange-based thing still doesn't work very well.

* * *

I got fanmail from someone I don't know complaining that I've stopped working on Transmundane. Gwack.

* * *

Cats: Quite orange!

Writing: check.

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11 October 2006 - Wednesday

Bah, bus betrayed me again today, and I had to walk from the train station all the way to nVidia!

* * *

Stupid Windows thing still doesn't work.

* * *

Unlike the last two weeks, there were numerous comics!

* * *

Ayse and Ken were full of germs and feeling poorly, so they didn't come to see The Twelve Kingdoms. Sadness! But doom for the protagonists! So much doom!

Mmm, bacon cheese bread!

* * *

Cats: Dani doesn't like it when I attempt to clean off her smelly bum with a damp paper towel. I explained that this means she should take better care of it herself, but I'm not sure I got through.

Writing: check.

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10 October 2006 - Tuesday

HAPPY HAPPY MARITHDAY!!

* * *

I didn't say up quite as late reading the Bujold as I did the Watts, but that's because I started earlier in the evening.

Fantasy, but in a different world than the Chalion books, and with a much stronger romance component. This is not to say that monsters are not slain, but that's not the most major plotline.

The cosmology seems to be worked out, but is much less well understood by the characters than in Chalion. However, given that the book ends before the protagonists have gotten to ask experts about even the minor mystery on their hands, it seems likely that more explanation will be forthcoming in future volumes.

Also, it sucks to be a girl in a low-tech setting.

* * *

For extra commute fun, today I had to spend a half day at Palmsource, my upcoming corporate masters. Their office turns out to be about a kilometer from the train station where I already get off to catch the shuttle for nVidia, so that's okay, but there is no useful public transit between Arques & Lawrence and Walsh & San Tomas. Stupid STUPID transit creatures!

The Palmsource people were quite nice, and they got me set up with a cube and computer and some reading material on the thing they want me to tear down and rebuild. Probably I will not die next week.

* * *

Today, we did not order pizza with chicken and creamy garlic sauce, so we were happy. We also watched anime!

After we finish The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, I want to watch it in the alternate order. Also, Dave was wrong about the mysterious babe in the opening credits.

* * *

Cats: Dani is really quite energetic these days! Sproing! Zoom! Sproing!

Writing: check.

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9 October 2006 - Monday

Oig. I stayed up until 43265293 o'clock reading Blindsight (Peter Watts), an exciting but fairly dark tale of posthumans (and one prehuman), none of them as well adjusted as one might hope, on a paranoid first-contentcontact mission. Creepy physics-based hazards, strange alien biology, and existential angst about the value of consciousness; how can you go wrong?

* * *

Stupid STUPID Windows creatures.

* * *

My stopping in to the bookstore on the way home was rewarded with a new Bujold book! W00t!

* * *

Cats: Dani seems to like that bag in the livingroom! I just worry that I or someone will step on the bag or try to kick it out of the way.

Writing: check.

First Content? by Dave (Tue Oct 10 11:40:45 2006)

Are they building a new wikipedia-like thing from scratch? I could definitely see horror and existential angst in that.

Re: First Content? by Trip (Tue Oct 10 14:21:24 2006)

Quiet, you!

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8 October 2006 - Sunday

The Zables' housewarming was quite a party, but they have a pretty substantial house. Also, much cake (which I didn't eat much of) and many kids. Al and Sherilyn were there with their kids, which shows how crazed they are.

I got to shake my puny fist at the person responsible for WebDAV in person, which was satisfying if not helpful. She confirmed that all the open-source WebDAV tools she knows of are pretty lame, and even though she once worked for Microsoft (on, in fact, the team that put WebDAV into Exchange), I don't think she's intrinsically evil.

Then Marith and I went to see the graduation of Ayse's Impact class and also bring her videotapes. Marith and Moria got to fight, and did very well. As usual, Ayse taught with vigor and grace; I have it on good authority that she ruled.

* * *

SUSHI! And ice cream.

* * *

Cats: Marmalade is under the basket, so Dani is hiding in the grocery bag on the living room floor. Kawaii!

Writing: check.

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7 October 2006 - Saturday

What a useless day! I wanted to rescue my package from the clutches of UPS, but they are closed on weekends. I successfully executed my fallback plan, which was to eat yummy Thai lunch, but that's not really much progress toward world domination. For the rest of the day, I sat on the couch reading beneath a cat or at the computer playing Spaceward Ho! next to a cat.

Reading: I finished The Lightstone (David Zindell), which is quest fantasy but with a pacifistic hero. It might have science-fictional underwear, but it also might not. Then I read all of Sun of Suns (Karl Schroeder), which does seem to be set in the same universe as Ventus and Lady of Mazes but takes place in a mostly self-contained setting that allows for dieselpunk space pirates. How can you go wrong?

* * *

Cats: Dani relaxed on my bulbous abdomen for hours while I read.

Writing: check.

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6 October 2006 - Friday

Looks like I'm at nVidia for one more week. Stupid Microsoft stuff.

At least the router stuff seems to work okay and is comprehensible to someone who isn't me.

* * *

Cats: Orange!

Writing: check.

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5 October 2006 - Thursday

Now RRDtool submits to my will! (Actually, the hard part was getting the perl module to install; RRDTool itself is easy to install.)

nVidia wants me to stay another week. I wonder what Taos will decide, since apparently they want me to start my next assignment on Monday.

* * *

Saiyuki Reload seems to have escaped the filler portion of the season and returned to the DOOOOOM.

* * *

Oops, Spaceward Ho! But at least my traditional investment in radical technology paid off with about ten turns' worth of income in one lump sum, so instead of going back and forth and maybe gaining a little ground on average, I can build some Enormous Fleets of Zappy Death and go around stomping on my foes. Raar!

* * *

Cats: Marith got so much kitty-love when she came over to watch Saiyuki! Dani snuggled up on her chest, and Marlamade stomped all over her lap and then hid under the hem of her long skirt, which formed a good kitty-cave!

Writing: check.

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4 October 2006 - Wednesday

After much effort, I have beaten WebDAV into submission. I had to poke around the innards of the perl module, since the docs for the module are incomplete and I couldn't find anything useful on the Net.

Raar!

* * *

I am a terrible person, so I forced Marith to drive me to Lee's. Sadly, there were no comics for her. However, there was rain.

* * *

My brain was too small, so I was unable to agitate for the playing of Dragonblooded, and Ayse had to do her homework anyway, so we played Tigris & Euphrates. It looked like Mike was going to win, but Dave crushed us like the insects we are.

I borrowed the 2nd ed Dragonblooded book and will try to convert my character. Since he's completely unoptimized, this probably won't be hard. Dave, who made an actual effective character, will probably have to do a lot of respecing.

* * *

Hah! No Spaceward Ho! tonight! Ph34r my l33t w1llp0w3r!

* * *

Cats: Dani is in a BAG! SO CUTE! (Yes, I say this every time. Because she is!)

Writing: check.

Dragonblooded 2nd ed by Dave (Thu Oct 5 14:37:20 2006)

Actually, there's very little change. He'll probably need a higher strength, and I'd like to see about redesigning his artifacts a bit, but that's probably about it.

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3 October 2006 - Tuesday

Today I hate WebDAV, because I can't find documentations for it anywhere! And I still hate MAPI because it hangs on login.

* * *

Still plenty of doom for anime! Also doom for us, because we ordered a pizza with chicken and creamy garlic sauce, which was suboptimal. But it was all okay!

* * *

Less doom of Spaceward Ho! I lost my first game on the grid galaxy pretty pathetically, so I started another one at a lower difficult level (as in, able to reach other stars with my starting ships) and seem to be doing okay. I only went to bed about an hour late.

* * *

Cats: Marmalade has taken to pouncing upon me when I'm trying to go to sleep at night or stay asleep in the morning again. It's good that he's being more affectionate and purry, right? Right?

Writing: check.

WebDAV by Jeremy (Sun Oct 8 07:45:17 2006)

Lisa, who is primarily a knitter and 13-year old rogue (with rope use!), more or less created WebDAV in her spare time. Rachel has her book if you can't catch Lisa. Dunno if she's up on the Perl module particularly.

Re: WebDAV by Trip (Sun Oct 8 12:08:01 2006)

I shake my puny fist in her direction! However, by crawling around in the tree of references, I have got the minimal functionality I need working. Probably.

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2 October 2006 - Monday

HAPPY HAPPY LIRALENDAY!!

* * *

A very nice person at nVidia gave me the secret knowledge for extracting the information I needed from Outlook (the hexful path in the registry is cryptic, but apparently consistent across machines), so progress was made. Wheee!

Now if only I could figure out why my script hangs on exit...

* * *

ZOMG so much Spaceward Ho! I finished the game from yesterday, played an entire game on the tiniest possible ring galaxy (about 25 stars for five players) which I somehow won despite being horribly metal-limited, and then, because I had enough l33t points after that, started a game on a square grid galaxy. So weird.

Eventually I was forced to acknowledge that it was well past bedtime.

* * *

Cats: Orange and adorable and perhaps not entirely pleased that I spent all evening fribbling with the warm flat thing and pushing them off it.

Writing: FAILURE.

Spaceward Ho! by Dave (Tue Oct 3 12:26:25 2006)

So, does the meteor attack still work, or did they do away with that?

Re: Spaceward Ho! by Trip (Tue Oct 3 12:30:39 2006)

Meteor attack? I don't think I'm familiar with this.

Birthday Wish by liralen (Mon Oct 16 11:29:16 2006)

Thank you for the birthday wish!! I appreciate it greatly. :-)

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1 October 2006 - Sunday

I went back and reread the first two Tiffany Aching books (The Wee Free Men and A Hat Full of Sky). They were still pretty good, but perhaps I'm just not the target audience.

Is it just me, or is Pratchett implying something unsavory about Petulia? (Probably just me.)

* * *

Whee, laundry. And then Spaceward Ho! Lots of Spaceward Ho!. So addictive. Just one more turn...

I finally pulled my fingers away from the keyboard long enough to go hunt some dinner at about 20:30. Sheesh.

* * *

Cats: Apparently the temperature has crossed the magic threshhold where Marmalade becomes affection again. Such a floozie.

Writing: check.

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