I just booked my ticket to Japan for April. I was freaking out when I was done, and had to bake cookies to calm down.

I decided to take a six AM flight with a five-hour layover, rather than a two PM one with a one-hour layover, because all through the ordering process I was having hideous flashbacks to running through Charles de Gaulle trying to find thegeekgene. Five hour layovers mean a lower likelihood of having to run and freaking myself out, so goddamnit, THAT IS WHAT I SHALL DO.
to see lawyers from another firm with whom my relationship is somewhat awkward - though one of them's helping me with a non-work project, the thing Monday is because they're defending an evil corporation we're suing for good reasons and for something like the nineteenth time. The Monday thing will take all day, will be primarily outdoors and most likely rained upon, and may require me to exercise diplomacy to prevent our clients from going for their throats and to prevent them from saying clueless and offensive things to our clients.

I am almost completely incapable of exercising diplomacy. I don't even have the low-level basic social skills. Asking how your mother is, etc. Don't have them. I play a Beast Mastery Hunter.

And this is actually the schedule for Tuesday and Wednesday, too.

Mom and Dad are out of town, and so in antisocial rebellion against this bullshit, I have barricaded myself in the house alone for the weekend. The way you do this, when the house's doors are mostly glass and the locks are all broken (this is the case), is to clean absolutely everything. This is always the first step; cleaning the house drives back chaos, thus holding off the heat death of the universe for the day, that being obviously the most important thing you want to keep out.

This accomplished, you turn the heat down and lights off for most of the house, putting a bean dish smelling strongly of garlic and bacon in the crockpot, that it may take firm and sole control of the room. Then you take the teapot to your room and burn some strong incense and turn on the space heater, leaving the phone out in the living room where you cannot easily reach it when it rings. These activities render the kitchen and the bedroom sovereign domains closed off from the rest of the world.

Having completed all of these preparations, I then read Sandman in its entirety while drinking two pots of tea. I need to find something else to read now.

When I came out to eat something at about 9:30 PM, I realized I hadn't given the animals their evening meal. I fed them breakfast just before dawn, because they woke me up then, because that's when they always wake Dad up for food. (They presumably have developed some sort of internal mechanism for waking themselves up at that particular infuriating time.) But they didn't come to get me at 4:00 PM, which is generally when Dad performs their Pavlovian afternoon ritual of pulling down the driveway, opening the door, turning on the lights, and feeding them. I had had the lights all out, and hadn't left or re-entered the house. I was the bringer of darkness, and had disrupted the flow of time. They didn't even act hungry when I fed them; it was not yet time for that.

I think I'm going to read Vorkosigan slash fanfiction now. Monday cannot stop me.

(I'm aware that it doesn't sound that way, but I have not actually consumed the small quantity of box wine sitting on the kitchen shelf yet. I do intend to do so shortly so that I can get to sleep; I've had too much tea today.)
To the stingy and paranoid, there is a special kind of gloom associated with the act of throwing away big garbage bags of food.
It has occurred to me that if I ever got to the point at which I was actually finishing stuff regularly, I would be one of those people who just writes the same thing over and over. I just did a census of my semi-active projects - of which I have seven - and realized that three of them have, within the first twenty pages, a scene wherein a confused older male authority figure attempts and fails to counsel a cynical kid who is slightly smarter than he is. In one of them I think it's going to happen again later with a different set of characters.

See, I am very aware of my tendency to make everyone genderbend and have secret identities and doubles and messed-up power relationships! Also, glasses and schemes. Because I actively seek out these elements in books and manga and suchlike, I am consciously aware of their attraction for me. Three of the seven also have a villainess terrifying a roomful of powerful people within the first twenty pages, but because I know that I enjoy such things, I consider it only natural that I should do this.

But this survey leads me to conclude that, apparently, I also have a thing for ineffectual mentor guys who mean well. What else could my brain be hiding from me?

I don't have a problem with this aspect of my personality - but the discovery implies the possibility of further hidden narrative patterns! What if I unconsciously endorse some terrifying morsel of Libertarian ideology? What if everything I write secretly contains a character from a book I read as a kid that I don't want to acknowledge liking? The situation is harrowing.
When you're testing something that involves some typing - as in, you need to send a test email, or make a test blog post - what piece of text do you usually type in?

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 8

When you're testing something that involves some typing - as in, you need to send a test email, or make a test blog post - what piece of text do you usually type in?

If no one else is going to see it, I instinctively type "trala." I don't know where that came from. A second iteration, if necessary, will be "tralala," and so on. If someone else will see it, though, it's always "Testing.", with the punctuation - evidently I am shamed by my own tralalaing.

These rules are suspended when it's a search query of any kind, because regardless of whether anyone's watching, I always feel it necessary to search for "elephants." I can't explain that, either. I guess I just want some elephants.
The problem with being a Wikipedia-based life form -

- well, actually, there are several of them. One of them is that sometimes you're reading a book and you see a sudden change in POV or a strange equivocation, and you try to click on the History page to see what happened there. ("Sir Reed had a reputation for promiscuity. [citation needed] Some historians, however, say that it was unfounded. [citation needed] Those historians, however, are largely discredited. [citation needed] It has been argued that scholars who edit Wiki entries about Sir Reed have an innate bias against him, and possibly also against scholarship as a whole. [citation needed] It has also been argued that you are dumb. [citation needed]")

I mean, that problem's worrying, too.

But the one for which that I originally began that first sentence was the compulsion, when you figure out something difficult, to document the solution. Even when the solution in question is to something that is extremely personal in nature, and thus probably does not strictly require online documentation.

Unrelatedly, today I figured out what to do when I have low blood sugar and really bad menstrual cramps. It involves bed, one electric blanket, two regular blankets, three glasses of water, aspirin, and a lot of vegetables.
How did it get decided that wine and cheese were the things that people would discuss the taste of? Why are these discussions so full of subjective, unquantifiable ideas that seem to have come from dreams, like the impression of the taste of oak or the smell of ashes? If the taste of oak can be isolated chemically, and someone tested every wine in the world for it, how many wines would be oaken, really?

Why isn't it whiskey and chocolate which receive this variety of attention? It takes years and fermentation to make wine and cheese, and this does lend them a mysterious air - but that eliminates only the chocolate from consideration as a Vaguely Eldritch Cultural Touchstone. Whiskey yet remains. Does whiskey lose because grapes and milk are edible in their raw state? Maybe we imagine that by tasting them, and then tasting their products, separated from them by time and mysterious processes taking place in the dark, we bracket alchemy.

(I assume that the reason's actually somehow economic in nature.)

This post is to commemorate the fact that I have had some wine and, four years after I first bought a bottle, I still don't actually like it. I should stick to the whiskey and chocolate.
You know the XKCD guy and his issues with velociraptors? I still automatically vet every structure I come across for its ability to protect me from Threadfall. When I'm stressed out I frequently move to the optimal Thread-safety point.
I said I wasn't depressed about my JLPT score - but this was obviously all lies.

Cut for flashcards. )
And I know I shouldn't be thinking about these things, and I know that it's totally self-destructive, and I know that Kubo Tite, if he has thought about them at all, has probably only basically thought, "Eh! Whatever! THIS NEXT GUY'S BANKAI SHALL BE A HAT


But I just - why do people die in Soul Society? I mean, they're all dead already. Do they, like... double-die? What are the mechanics of this? Is it explained?

In which I proceed to go ON AND ON about this idea. )

I sometimes suffer from compulsions to do things like brush my hair exactly a hundred strokes, or make sure all the blinds are pointing the same direction, or build simple structures out of my macaroons, or reread manga that I just read a week ago because I want to memorize the dialog and panel layouts of all my favorite scenes because I love them so very much.

At the moment, this last applies to Please Save My Earth. Do you know why I love this manga? THIS SCENE IS WHY I LOVE THIS MANGA. (No spoilers.)

Read the rest of this entry » )

(Crossposted to SarahPin.com, Dreamwidth, and LiveJournal. You can leave comments at whichever.)

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