Feb. 5th, 2014 09:31 pm
silverflight8: Different shades of blue flowing on a white background like waves (Fractal)
AWww yeah snow! It snowed more than ten centimeters today, all light fluffy white snow and it was glorious. This is what winter's supposed to be! I miss new snow. There are lots of downsides of course, but when I poke my nose out the door in the morning and see the snow it always makes me happy. It's so pretty!

Think I'm going to use tomorrow morning to try to get some pictures, assuming it's not all dirty yet! That's the advantage of living on a very quiet side street--yeah, so the street is never ever plowed but the snow is gorgeous long after it's dirty on main arteries.
silverflight8: Different shades of blue flowing on a white background like waves (Fractal)
Got on a plane JUST IN TIME this morning; there were some problems with navigation and horrendous snowy/icy road conditions blahblahblah. I got to the airport at 5:45am (boarding: 5:25, departure 6:00). Everyone in the security line was very nice and let me budge them so I actually cut the line (and it's a tiny, tiny terminal, this one: there are eight gates total). I asked the security guard if I could cut and she said "you have to ask everyone in front of you" but people were quite good-natured about it. Thank you.

I boarded just fine (and was not even the last one on!) but I don't want to ever cut it that fine again. We stayed on the tarmac for a good hour waiting for baggage to be loaded, and then for de-icing. By the time we took off it was starting to get light outside. I fell asleep, but I did wake up in the middle and HAD TO TAKE PICTURES even with my phone and here is one I like, which I took while we were flying over the lake:

fluffy clouds with sun rising on the right side, blue sky gradient into white-pink tinted clouds
(It is a large picture, but it is also very grainy. Click for larger size.)

On some of the banked turns the perspective was heavily tilt-shifted and it was the most amazing miniaturizing effect. I wish I'd gotten a picture there. I wish I were a better flier and could do things like airborne photography. I want to yank open the window so I can get a clearer shot--it's such a different thing up there. There was a lot of snow too, so you could see the snow-cleared roads as very precise, black lines winding through white snowfields.
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Default)
I'm tired, I spent all day running about with friends (fun but exhausting), I have to get up tomorrow at a reasonable hour, and I can't go to sleep, apparently.

What was going to be an hour of bowling turned into an hour of bowling, then a quick run to the mall (one friend is leaving for two months tomorrow, and needed to return something), then about four hours at karaoke. As a result, I've been earwormed terrifically with this song. I am going to link you to the video with lyrics, because the music video is an incredibly emotionally-manipulative, sad piece of...of...film. WHY are so many Chinese music videos so sad?


(Totally unrelated.)

You know, when I used to live in a 4-person household, the milk never went bad. This is because other family members are much bigger fans of milk and obviously we'd drink it long before the expiry date. But on my own, I keep milk mostly for tea, and sometimes I'm unpleasantly surprised by curdled stuff. So I've gotten used to sniffing and tasting milk very carefully every time to make sure it's still okay.

Milk is such a ubiquitous thing that I used to drink it without ever thinking about taste. But now that I have to assess its freshness, I can taste so clearly the animalness of it. It's not milk, it's quite unavoidably liquid that came from an animal, and while it doesn't really gross me out, it's so weird. How does this even come through taste? I think I'd like to go back to my ignorance.


THERE ARE TOO MANY BOOKS IN MY ROOM. They're on my shelves and on the floor and under my desk and under my bed and on my night table and stacked on my table and desk and EVERYWHERE. It's starting to drive me a bit bonkers. Every time I tidy up, they just get sprawled everywhere again. I need to make another trip to the library, but I haven't reviewed them yet! Oh god.

While I was waiting for friends this morning--I love them, but J was a full hour late and generally they're never punctual--I sat in Chapters and read Karen Miller's Empress. I've read Karen Miller before--she wrote some really great stuff set in the Star Wars Prequel EU mostly focused on Kenobi and Skywalker (easy path to my heart). Empress is gritty fantasy instead. Somehow, considering the extensive torture sequence in Wild Space, in which iirc Kenobi touched a lightsaber to his wound in order to use the pain to connect with Coruscant (AUGH), I'm not terribly surprised by the darkness of Empress.

The interesting thing (to me, anyway) is that while I'm interested in continuing with Empress, which starts off with the protagonist (a girl) watching her mother be beaten and then raped and being subjected to regular beatings herself--as indeed all the women are in this tiny, desert-locked village--I couldn't get more than five pages past Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall. Like Empress, Wolf Hall starts with a son getting beat by his father, but I think there's a vein of kindness running through Empress that I really didn't think was going to happen in Mantel's novel, and I immediately ditched. Hekat in Empress is definitely subjected to highly distilled misogyny, but she gets away, and starts exploring a new land. Mantel on the other hand--well, it's straight up historical fiction, and there's no getting away.
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Bee)
Unverified account from two people sitting next to me, as I was taking off my skates at the arena (paraphrase): "I saw someone in cross country skis today...[he was going so fast]..." On one hand, I totally buy someone being tempted, because holy snow drifts, but on the other hand, I wonder how he navigated turns and city streets. Would definitely have been tempted if I owned a pair.

Snow day was not declared.

I am intensely envious of the woman I saw going down the street in snowshoes. They were bright green and she did not sink through every drift.

Other highlight of the day was the girl at the rink who was dressed in the most 90's tracksuit I've ever seen. Black stretchy pants with pink lines. Similar sort of top, which in itself isn't unusual; the better skaters dress in stretchy tight clothing anyway. What caught my attention was that she was wearing a headband. In fuchsia. I complimented her headband and she confirmed that it was a genuine article from the 90's. :D
silverflight8: Barcode with silverflight8 on top and userid underneath (Barcode)
Today was FREEZING.

It was wonderful this morning because it was still snowing (!!!) and usually when it snows like that, you know, powder-puff and sunny skies, the temperature's usually not that bad. Did regret leaving behind my scarf though. But the snow more than made up for it - it's been weird living here, because it doesn't snow as much.

But coming home at four - before the sun went down, I'll add - it was FREEZING. It had stopped snowing and the wind was blasting the snow off the trees and roofs (so it looked like it was snowing giant clumpy white blobs) and did I mention FREEZING? I checked the weather report and it said -15C, which isn't unheard of and really not that cold, except I was not expecting it. Oh god.

But that's not what I was going to talk about. In a fit of procrastination, I've made mockups of calligraphy broadsides. Basically I went searching for Kushiel's Legacy icons and kind of, uh, hated the typography on some of them, so I started playing around with phrases. I especially like Thelesis de Mornay's poetry quote; I made several other quotes, but the other ones need more work. I used a fountain pen for the blue, but if I want to make a full-sized version, I need to buy gouache: you can't tell because the pen is very thin, but a thicker dip pen using this sort of ink would look extremely patchy and weirdly translucent, because this ink isn't really designed for larger work.

I used to scan these sorts of things. Now I have a Mac (D:) and I cannot get any program to recognize my multifunction printer as a scanner, so I'm stuck with photography. Which, yeah, cry harder plz. But it does mean that nothing came out quite flat, and the reason why there's pens and stuff weighing down the paper so it doesn't curl up. Also I cannot write in a straight line to save my life. My squares are not squares, they are but faint shadows of the ideal boxes that would have resulted if I were anything approaching a draftsman.

eta: Also, I shot this photo at 1600 ISO (I...think I didn't bother changing the settings from the last time I was taking pictures, which was a night-time fireworks show) so I wouldn't bother enlarging: the photo's really grainy.

At any rate, picture of calligraphy rough under the cut )

Lastly, Samuel L Jackson expressed his desire to return in Episode VII: http://www.jedinews.co.uk/news/news.aspx?newsID=10067
I don't know why I'd have to be a ghost. I'm a Jedi! I fell out of a window and they took my hand off. I could show up as a one-handed Jedi - alive!

Not gonna lie, that would be AMAZING. I would be all over that. More Mace Windu! :D
silverflight8: Barcode with silverflight8 on top and userid underneath (_support)
It's almost midnight. I just took out the second tray of cookies from the oven.

(The eggs were going to go bad soon, so chocolate chip cookies it was! Though the creaming of sugar and butter by hand caused me great pain.)
silverflight8: Different shades of blue flowing on a white background like waves (Fractal)
I didn't get to see my family for Thanksgiving but I did get to:

1: Meet a friend I hadn't seen since August, for all that we live twenty minutes apart by walking; our schedules are both really busy and the chances of bumping into each other are slim to none because we don't go to the same places. We caught up and walked around the park where the leaves were changing colour and sat in the sunshine and drank hot things to keep warm, coffee for her, hot chocolate for me. Monday was an autumn day just on the cusp of being chilly - a little cool under the trees, but warm under the sun. Being the holiday, there were less people around than usual, and we just walked around and enjoyed the scenery.

2: This morning I was walking down the street when I saw another friend! I'd thought she'd fallen off the grid because she wasn't answering email or phone. There wasn't really time to chat - we said hi (well, she said hi, I exploded in "oh my god you're here I haven't seen you for ages how are you [friend] and I thought you'd disappeared why don't you answer your email?" [paraphrase]). Then she called me, and we discussed ENGLISH. It's not her primary study, or really her favourite subject, but she is of my cohort and is moreover taking a class on literary tradition so I'd read some of her required texts. And I love my friends here dearly, they are none of them interested in history or language arts at all, zip zilch nada, and it was so satisfying to just talk about a book. Actually it was the Odyssey, which is technically not a book, but still. Actually meeting might be a challenge, given the schedule for the next few weeks, but the phone conversation was so lovely.

3: And then tonight at a group meeting I wasn't really keen on, I found that one of the group members was an air cadet herself (a power pilot) who is best friends with someone from my flight at SLC. Ahhh! SLC was a cobbling of many kids from across the country, so after it dissolved for the fall we all scattered back to where we'd come. We had been discussing financial statements (for the project itself) but finding that out was the highlight of my evening, because [as she put it]: "It's a small world," and just then, it really was.

Today I was tired and didn't want to go through the day and was grouchy all over my computer text files about it (I just open .txt files and start typing), but that's all small petty things. I'm thankful for being able to see my friends, reconnect with ones I thought I'd lost, even just know that they're still out there doing their thing and that story goes on for them, too.

So it was a wonderful Thanksgiving after all. ♥
silverflight8: text icon: "Go ahead! Panic! Do it now and avoid the June rush!" (Panic!)
Having heard the excellent advice about overcoming writer's block, paraphrased:

Write your words in a different, unreadable font like Webdings, so you can't see what you've written. Then go back the next day and untranslate it to see where to start for the next day, and continue writing in the unreadable font to prevent your internal editor from critiquing.

...I decided to follow it.

The writing went well enough as I dashed off the next piece of my GLORIOUS TALE (subtitled: Pixie Lights). And then I, being your usual impatient fellow, decided to untranslate it without waiting the aforementioned night.

When I switched the font to Times New Roman, though, I ran into a small problem.

Namely, this one. (Illustration, in technicolor). )

Word's inability to translate certain words seems to be random. There are parts of one word translated properly, and parts that aren't. Typoed words are translated properly in some cases and in other cases. So I switched the boxes (which is Word's way of freaking out and saying it can't render the text) back into Webdings and translated them manually.

I am getting good at reading Webdings, but next time, I think I'll just turn the colour of the font white.
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Bee)
Advice: never wire money unless you have to. 1

Interesting detail: gummy bear torture occurred in the hallway outside my room (!!!). Someone brutally tacked an orange gummy to the wall, and idk how it even stays (the pin shouldn't be long enough).

Other interesting detail: while I was in the bank, it was really foggy. The bank has enormous west-facing windows, so you could see one building on the next street which appeared to be slowly disintegrating into the sky. It's a standard high-rise, but the white exterior alternates with black windows, so it looked like a zebra-striped thing vanishing into air....it was incredibly bizarre. I thought at first that dark smoke was flagrantly disobeying physics and rising to the heavens in a zig-zag path. I wish I had a picture.

Being a student: is boring. Thought process during class: hm, okay, that makes sense, wait, what? no, what are doing? what? oh. ohhhh. I see. ok. hm. And so it goes. This is why I don't update much. Plus, I'm playing Runescape.

Dear Liberal government: )

Today while in the drugstore I complimented a lady on her hat. She smiled and said: "Yes! It keeps me warm." The hat in question was the size of a car-tire and extremely white and furry. It was a bold fashion statement, to say the least. (She did look warm. Maybe I should invest in one too.)

Last thing: LiveJournal, too, has an announcement regarding SOPA and PIPA, although less in-your-face than Dreamwidth. I'm glad that both LJ and DW decided not to shut down as Wikipedia did; for a protest that specifically targets censorship, I think louder voices - especially on sites specifically designed for sharing one's life - is better. Wikiepdia's shut down is ramatic - yes. But I prefer having my voice.

1 So due to an unfortunate confluence of moving and credit ratings, I, the sole member of family in Canada, was tasked with wiring money. This was a three-trip affair, and the last trip took over an hour. (Admittedly, mostly it was because I kept getting wrong info, but I digress). In doing the wiring, I talked to all of the tellers of my neighbourhood branch, had the manager called over multiple times (?), and listened to a lot of pop music. On the upside, I now know this branch really well! Good Lord.

2 http://cfsontario.ca/downloads/CFS-Tuition%20Grant%20Briefing%20Note.pdf Retrieved January 18, 2012
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Surprisingly I'm enjoying writing this essay. Even if I'm still about 700 words behind (oh, the historiography'll have lots of words and I still haven't got an intro/conclusion and I'll manage fine, wordcount is usually not a problem.) For once I understand why the essay as a form is used. It is like waging a war: not guerrilla war of now, but the two lines of armies marching upon each other, like Spartan armies of old. One may delineate one's arguments with absolute precision and backup with sources and throw them THWAP THWAP THWAP at the reader. (Or gently persuade, but I like the in-your-face better.) Fiction is a lot less explicit and it's sometimes only after the 1000+ pages that you see the themes arcing delicately over. I suppose this would be biowarfare: creeps on you without realizing. Or maybe that's just very good undercover ops.

The elevator broke so I climbed up to my 23rd floor room after dinner. And then the fire alarm went off and I, being just then at the study room, climbed down 28 floors. As devil-possessed awful as the elevators are, I am really glad they exist <3

(one poor fellow I spoke to said he'd been doing his laundry. On the basement floor. He got off the twenty-first floor.)
silverflight8: Different shades of blue flowing on a white background like waves (Fractal)
RIP, C-4 italics nib, you have served me well.

I can't believe it took me something like an hour to do a stanza. Possibly that's why the nib is now put in the garbage. Also this picture has just been uploaded and not modified in any way so it's quite, quite large if you click through. )

I am muffled today in real-life (owing to a cold and having lost my voice) and so in compensation I have swung into answering support requests WITH A VENGEANCE and so on. Because I can actually articulate myself there.
silverflight8: 2010 Nanowrimo: text "sentences do not require verbs" (Nanowrimo 2010)
It is nice to be reminded of the fact "Earth possesses a great deal of liquid water" - sometimes. Can't complain, since I don't live anywhere that has monsoon season. So many worms. But the wild-rose is blooming (finally) and the grass that is unmowed - i.e. the city green-spaces - is absolutely ridiculous and is waist-height.

Here, have a video )

I've read three books within the last three days (one of them reminded me why I really don't like Robespierre! Hi, French Revolution!) and I'm wondering if I ought to finish off the godforsaken Atlas Shrugged, which I began perhaps six months ago and abandoned. I also have the most amazing backlog of books to review, because I always put it off and oops! There goes my resolve.
silverflight8: Barcode with silverflight8 on top and userid underneath (Barcode)
I am here, I am still alive, and I am still typing.

There has been more calligraphy done in the last week then I have done for many a month. And I feel at last that my writing is moving back to a more formal style; I think it is the influence of Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (Susannah Clarke), which I am reading at the moment. The way I talk in real life just feels too stark - too bare, too open, too bold, if that makes sense - for it to transfer aright into writing.

I keep thinking I ought to make an entry, except all that is interesting to say is personal, and if you ever ask one of my friends, I think they will say that I am a really private person. When things happen, I vanish into a book and avoid people. I would rather shut down and say nothing - observe - than anything else then, and it isn't uncomfortable, to stop talking. I tend to vanish off the internets as far as me posting goes, not so much commenting/responding to others, when I am overwhelmed with life, when there's something massive going on in real life, or when all of the exciting things are too laden with detail for me to be publishable online. (I am one of those kids who were told to never put information online; it came as a huge shock that people did this on Facebook! oh my goodness.)

But! The choir has released the CD, and I am listening to it - we sound better than I expected we would! And far better than initial impressions. I still think that we are not quite good enough to do studio recordings, though; though they sound quite nice, I can hear all the flaws (I feel like I'm hearing my voice, very very loudly, but I'm sure that's just paranoia - I think?) and we sound better in the live concerts, where the recording equipment is less able to detect every nuance. Alas, Listen to the Lambs's soprano part is no better than I expected :( At least the altos sound good, and that's what's important ;)

The other things is that release 80 is out and there is, ah, fallout.
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Default)
I am emerging from Round One of Exams (there are two this year) and so I should be posting...somewhat more often! If there is something you have wanted me to do for ages you should ask now since I have a lull of a few weeks before Round Two.

Babbling... )
silverflight8: lion rampant on shield. See <user name=houses> (house of bit)
Hi flist! I am still here. Just not updating often right now. (I am about to enter the busiest part of the year.)

The last week or so, in point form )
silverflight8: Barcode with silverflight8 on top and userid underneath (_support)
Random link dump, because I was browsing through a community :P

Frank in a whole bunch of incarnations. Also includes the one with SA's logo, but it looks more like he's been shot or something o.O

I had no idea this existed. :D :D

Other things that may or may not be of interest to you:
1. a water main burst on one of the main roads in the city the other day. It looked like the river burst its banks. I was impressed.

2. It's melting it's melting! Spring is coming! (When the sun comes out the world feels beautifully optimistic, it's golden and warm and oh glory! It's partly cloudy today. The clouds have this way of quashing that optimism.)

3. The ground is blushing green.

4. I would like to have a voice like this. (although they do have the choir back them up, which helps enormously with power and all).
silverflight8: Different shades of blue flowing on a white background like waves (Fractal)
dear flist:

Anyone know of interesting journals/blogs that write in either French or Chinese? LJ, DW, off-site entirely: I am looking for reading material. Things I am interested in: (erm) books-reading-language-literature-words. Anyone who you think has really good writing. About themselves or the world or anything you find interesting, really; I can always pick and choose. I'd just rather not have image-heavy ones, if possible, since I'm after the words and reading comprehension :)

*puts plate of cookies out*

I saw a robin red-breast yesterday and I've heard the geese honking (and the seagulls crying, which always makes me think of the sea, poor landlocked-city!). Also today there was ten centimeters of snow and equal parts of slush. :P

I've also got a flamingo. From 750words, I mean; that's one of the badges you get when you write for ten days in a row. A flamingo! Sadly, the next one will take another twenty days (the amazing albatross) so there's time yet for me to accidentally miss a day. Or for OpenID authentication to go down, which amounts to the same thing.
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Default)
I read A Doll's House today.
possible spoilers )

I think I'm getting addicted to My Little Pony.


Mar. 9th, 2011 09:42 pm
silverflight8: bee on rose  (Default)
dear mucus-producing cells in my esophagus:

why are you so mean? and would you please have a conversation with my lungs, about the coughing?

with no great love,

I think that taking a six-hour nap today was a mistake. I always feel like I'm rising from the dead when I do that. D:


silverflight8: bee on rose  (Default)

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