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    Saturday, April 19th, 2014
    Friday, April 18th, 2014
    Truncated Tanka Challenge (Spring 2014) 4-18
    How chilly the day,
    still, but daffodils defied
    the late frost and stand,
    green buds on bush and tree branch
    banners of spring's victory.

    Current Mood: contemplative
    for sale: 3BR house, Philadelphia
    I'm looking to sell my house in West Philadelphia and get a smaller and less expensive one, in the same neighborhood if possible. So if you're interested, or know someone who might be, or know of a place that might suit me, reply to this post or send a private message.

    Looking to sell:
    3-bedroom row house in University City area (near Penn, Drexel, Univ. of the Sciences), on quiet block near Clark Park in an ethnically diverse neighborhood, near transit.
    Two stories + unfinished basement, large living and dining rooms, garage. New reflective roof.

    Looking to buy:
    Smaller house not far from same neighborhood, 2-3 bedrooms.

    This entry was originally posted at You can comment here, or there using OpenID or your Dreamwidth ID. comment count unavailable comments there so far.

    Current Mood: hopeful
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    Thursday, April 17th, 2014
    Girl Genius Comic for Friday, April 18, 2014
    Girl Genius Comic for Friday, April 18, 2014Collapse )

    <3 On Saturday, I will be at SakuraCon and Phil will be at NorWesCon! Edit: Oh, also on Friday and Sunday. Whoops.--Kaja<3

    our KickStarter for Volume 13
    Thankful Thursday

    So... today I'm thankful for...

    • Music and musicians.
    • A room big enough for house concerts!
    • Kids and cats.
    • Gin.
    • The ability to hold things more or less together in public.

    I'd add "getting the taxes done" except that I didn't. Bit of a short list today. Sorry about that.

    [Crossposted from, where it has comment count unavailable comments. Comment wherever you prefer; anonymous comments are allowed on DW only]

    Current Mood: flaky
    After Seeing Contata 7's Hotel
    A trip to New Jersey ended with a ride back into town on a Sunday afternoon in early spring.

    There was a street fair.

    I bought a silk comforter cover whose zipper disintegrated after one use. One of the matching pillows suffered a similar fate and is now a handbag. Nice day over all.

    This is me being a tourista:

    1404 C 47 U Square 1404 C 32 Olde Good Things d
    My tweets
    Random Things for the Day
    Just back from the first two days of Passover with Batya's sister and family.  I believe the appropriate term is "ded from cute."  A five and a half year old with a tooth about to come out, a three year old with the biggest smile, and a very friendly baby.  Also, older kids you can have a conversation with.  A fun if exhausting time for all.

    Alas, I have to head to work for the afternoon would be nice to have all of the holiday off, but there is too much to do, as ever.

    But I had just a bit of time this morning to decompress.  And to finish off Scooby Doo: Mystery Incorporated on Netflix.  If you had told me that there would ever be a version of this beloved but rather juvenile show that I would binge watch, I would have called you nuts.  But amazingly, this series, clearly influenced by Buffy and X-Files and surprisingly smart and clever, is really worth watching.  The voice cast is generally strong, the use of pop culture references and of the history of the show itself is great, and there are even real (or close to real ) relationships between the characters.  Plus Harlan Ellison shows up.  Really.  If you have a spare moment or two, I highly recommend you give this a try.  Especially if you loved the original Scooby Doo as a kid, and still have a soft spot for it despite knowing better.

    And that is all for now.  On to work.  And more holiday!

    daf bit: Beitzah 17
    (Today's daf is 18.)

    On Shabbat the Amidah (central prayer of the service) has seven blessings, in contrast to weekdays when it has nineteen. On festivals, also, the Amidah has seven blessings. What if a festival falls on Shabbat? Beit Shammai says you pray eight blessings, inserting the festival blessing after the one for Shabbat. Beit Hillel, on the other hand, says you pray seven blessings, using the Shabbat text but inserting a reference to the festival in the middle of it. Rabbi says you should also end this blessing "...who sanctifies Shabbat, Israel, and the seasons". A tanna disputes the ordering in this last phrase, but the halacha follows Rabbi (and Hillel). (17a)

    Wednesday, April 16th, 2014
    20 Years Ago...
    Twenty years ago today I was awakened by a 7:30am phone call from my mom informing me my grandmother had died of a heart attack the previous evening.

    At the time, I was in a hotel room at the Regal Constellation just outside of Toronto, attending FilKONtario 4. I had been attracted by the opportunity to see Kathy Mar, who I'd previously met at ConFrancisco, and to meet for the first time several denizens of the Filk Category on GEnie's Science Fiction Round Table. With a chance to schedule a few days between the end of a long-term temporary desktop publishing job and the start of a permanent structural engineering position, I'd rounded up Sue Cochran, Steve Brinich and Bill Wells and driven north to the wilds of Mississauga. (With a sleepover at Eli Goldberg's house in Pittsburgh.)

    So, having enjoyed a Friday afternoon and evening of introductions, fun and music, I now found myself turning to my new friends. In particular, MEW (who I'd actually met at the first Conterpoint) and Judith Hayman provided shoulders to cry on and advice on making the decision to stay, while folks like Urban Tapestry, Andrea Dale, and Dave Clement provided friendship and fine music to carry me through the weekend.

    By the time Sue, Steve, Bill and I rolled back down the QEW on Sunday evening, FilKONtario and the Southern Ontario filkers had established themselves for me as the models of what a filk convention and filk community should be.

    I've been back every year since. FilKONtario's one of the most eagerly anticipated cons on my schedule, and the list of memorable moments grows with every visit. (And then there was TorCon III...)

    And in just over a week, I'll be joining friends both old and new for another weekend of fun, music and memories!
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    If you know someone in the EPA, hug them!
    (An expansion of a thought I'd put on a different thread on FB- There's nothing really timely about it, I was just following a link to some qvetching about some Environmental Regs)

    Working for the EPA has got to be the most thankless job in the world. On the one hand, you've got clear and present environmental dangers that are actually harming people and ecosystems, and it's your job to do something about it. But Heaven forfend if you actually craft a sensible regulation that actually affects how people conduct their business, because then you're the Big Bad Government Man, denying people (and corporations) their "Costitutional Rights" to ignore the consequences of their bullshit. So you try to illuminate the truth with studies and science and now you're "Wasting taxpayers' money" (Again) proving what you already knew while fending off corporate pitbulls and conspiracists trying to block, undermine, and deny your efforts/results just to save their profits and/or delusions.

    And on the other hand, you'll get whack jobs going after you about stuff that *isn't* harmful- and in an attempt to illuminate the truth you conduct a (yet another) study that proves (again) that (whatever) isn't harmful. And what happens? You're stuck between Scylla and Charybdis (AGAIN): "wasting taxpayers' money" proving what you knew already (AGAIN) while you fend off an onslaught of idiots accusing you of conspiracy because your lab results fail to back up their delusions.

    So- If you work for the EPA, Hugs to You today.
    Tuesday, April 15th, 2014
    Girl Genius Comic for Wednesday, April 16, 2014
    Girl Genius Comic for Wednesday, April 16, 2014Collapse )

    <3 The KickStarter is still going strong! Thank you, all our supporters!--Kaja<3

    our KickStarter for Volume 13
    kids these days
    Kids these days, with their TiVos and their Roku streaming television units and their YouTube and their impatience with watching shows as they're being aired because of these things called "commercials". Whaddaya MEAN the show's not back yet, Mommy? Bring it back! Kid, when I was your age, I had to watch TV with commercials, uphill in the snow both ways, and we LIKED it.

    Current Mood: amused
    New term: Troupe
    Having inspired a new programming coinage today, let's record it for posterity:
    Troupe: a bunch of closely-related Actors in an Actor-based environment such as Akka or Erlang.
    I needed a term for my documentation, now that a single Space is getting up to more than half a dozen *kinds* of Actors, and potentially several dozen actual ones -- there was nothing in the standard literature to refer to this collection, so I asked on akka-user. Credit to Daniel Armak for coming up with the great suggestion, based on an idea from Viktor Klang.

    Yay for terminology that is appropriate, evocative, and not already being used for something...
    The Four Players
    I wrote this for Alarums and Excursions a few months ago but it seems appropriate to post it tonight.

    The good player asks, "what are the rules and customs at this table?" To them, you must explain how the game works, both that which is written down and the rules of gaming etiquette and give them all the responsibilities they can handle and your game supports.

    The simple player asks "what do I do next?" To them, you must explain only that which is necessary to plan their next move and begin roleplaying in earnest—If you confuse them with too many options, they might cease playing and/or think the rules are the game, rather than the platform for the game.

    The wicked player asks,"what can I get away with?" By framing the game as a source of loopholes to abuse they subvert the purpose of the game and attempt to hurt everyone else's play in favor of their own fun, and you should teach them their error—or even exile them from the table—as soon as possible.

    As for the player too shy to ask questions, you must treat them gently, but try to draw them into the game, asking them "what are you doing now?" and "what would you like to do next?" In so doing, you can allow them to develop into a productive player whether or not they give up their shell..

    This entry was originally posted on Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comment there or comment here below.

    Current Mood: full
    Is there a Gnostic in the house?
    Or a student of Gnosticism? Preferably one who's seen the movie Noah.

    Here's a review of the movie which claims it has a tremendous amount of Gnostic/Kababalistic symbolism: bodies are inferior to being pure spirit, the snake was right, God the creator is bad....

    And some ranting about how Christian pastors and leaders couldn't tell how heretical it all was.

    Anyone know whether this is a reasonably fair interpretation of the movie?

    This entry was posted at Comments are welcome here or there. comment count unavailable comments so far on that entry.
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    Transition Season
    Yesterday the sun came out and there was no shade from the trees, so I had to tour the shadows. I started to sweat and began to mourn for the end of the winter. I came home with no energy, and a distict ache across my lower belly from the grocery run. Today it's cool with periods of rain, and the possibility of snow tonight. I feel so much better.

    On my homeworld, this kind of weather would last for a couple of years at a time, then it would turn warm for another year or so, more like late May, or early June. It seldom got warmer than that unless you lived in the deserts.

    I do not look forward to the Hot Season.

    This work was Produced Under The Influence To Influence Others Positively (PUTITIOP). Not included with the Premium Package.
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