Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 08:16 am
When my stepfather died nearly three years ago, my mother sorted through his things and gave much of them to his offspring, one of whom has two children. She knew they wouldn't want the materials he'd acquired for trying to learn Korean; most of those have come to me. (He enjoyed watching sageuk---historical tv shows---and had continued working at his intelligence analysis job till he fell ill, past age seventy; the mental cycles required for the latter kept him from retaining much of his language self-study. He was quite good at his job.) Since I had the Rogers/You/Richards College Korean already, his copy didn't come to me and isn't included in this overview of materials, which is an attempt to move the little stack off my desk.

Language study can be idiosyncratic; herein are remarks on some pros and cons of what I've inherited.

Read more... )
Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 10:49 am
Title: Dief and Turtle's Day Off: Pink
Characters: Fraser and RayK
Rating: G

Knitting )
Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 11:36 am
Posted in full at: at April 23, 2014 at 04:30AM
copperbadge: eruvadhril replied to your post:Answers About Kindereggs Hey, Sam, tell us about how...

eruvadhril replied to your post:Answers About Kindereggs

Hey, Sam, tell us about how you used to make bootleg hooch under your sink in college!

WELL I’LL TELL YOU, all you really need to make alcohol is yeast, sugar, and fruit juice. When I was doing some research in some old newspapers, I came across a recipe for “dorm wine” — you mix yeast and sugar in the bottom of a large jug, then add fruit juice concentrate and fill the jug with water (I used a 2-liter soda bottle). You tape a balloon over the mouth of the jug to prevent bugs and dust getting in but to allow for gas expansion as everything ferments, and after about two weeks, when the balloons have deflated, you have decent but nigh-undrinkable alcohol.

The key to making it drinkable is to age it in the fridge for at least a few weeks; the longer it ages the better it tastes. I made “apple jack” and “red wine” this way. It was pretty mellow, probably not any higher alcohol content than most beer, but if you’re 19 and can’t buy booze yet, a couple of bucks for a 2-L of beer isn’t bad.

If you’re concerned about someone noticing what you’re buying, get flour and stuff and pretend you’re going to try making bread with the yeast. (Get baking powder as well, and make pancakes.)
Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 07:25 am
Happy El Dia de la Rosa / El Dia del Llibre / World Book Day to all those who celebrate!

...Y'all do all celebrate, right? *eyes*
Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 12:53 am
Today my manager was Out, and I used the 1:1 time shoving things into boxes, and reconciling papers with computers, and pulling things out of closets.

I popped by the desktop office with two briefcases full of ancient Latitude mumblety-something versions. Poor long-suffering Chip. Then I returned with a third briefcase, because there was really nowhere else to put it.

As part of this whole exercise, various things are being put out for salvage, such as the tablecloths of bad mojo, and a whole bunch of random swag. People from the team were coming up to me the whole day, asking whether I had any left. The vultures claimed it all, very quickly.

Transporting an array of coffee syrup bottles coherently is less fun than you might imagine. This is complicated by the need for everything to be in boxes -- if I thought I could get away with it, I would have left it intact and just carried it across and down myself. But probably not, no. So all the syrups went in one box. I top each box with my email address, just in case the external labeling fails and I have an orphaned box found somewhere.

So there was the matter of getting the syrup pumps out of the bottles. This involved unscrewing, draining, rinsing, and being careful about angles. I had a little more coffee than usual due to using up the drained syrup.

One of the bottles was the ill-favoured cherry-lime. I left that in the traditional free-stuff place.

I got the notice that I was accepted in to the transition pilot for the leap from Exchange 2007 to 2013. In the absence of my Overlady, I had to check her inbox to make sure she'd got the same message (because we go as a unit). In said inbox, I found a question from the PM on the other end of my block. So I hit the database again, and shook it until candy fell out, and this time I was careful to reply as myself and not as my Overlady. So another PM is learning where the information comes from.

One of the mover guys came past my cube and asked was I going to use all those boxes. Yes. Yes, I was.

The PM down the corner is not sure when she's moving, but she thinks it's soon. She is also going to be out of the state next week sometime. This may interact poorly. I bequeathed her two of my boxes -- when I run out, I can request more, but if she's going to be out of the office, she has a limited time window for packing.

The large metal rooster goes in the box before the lava lamp.

I saw JD checking in vaguely near where I was at, and called to ask if he needed a ride home. He allowed as how that might be good. Various communications later, I made my escape and headed in the direction of dinner. (Purple was delighted to learn of a place that did Mongolian beef in the general area, but was staying Somewhat Later.) I joined JD and his hiking buddy. Om nom nom beef.

When I headed out from work, the cherry-lime syrup bottle was still as I'd left it.

I had forgotten how very much I dislike driving and parking near Castro Street in Mountain View. It is not my favorite thing. Fortunately, parking garage. Fortunately, legs.

Then I drove JD home. Yay!

The Starbucks near my friendly neighborhood Trader Joe's is open hella late. I got a cookie. Then I came home and finished up my step count while detangling and re-braiding my hair.
Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 06:28 pm
I felt like tossing things in the slow cooker today.

1 large onion. 1/2" diced
1 generous handful of baby carrots cut in thirds (about 1/2" dice)
1 cup lentils
2 Tbsp minced garlic
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can (15oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1/2 can (5oz) fire roasted Tex Mex diced tomatoes, undrained
1 Tbsp tomato-chicken bouillon powder dissolved in 1 cup water

Layer the ingredients in the crock and cook on high for 6 hours. The chicken will fall into shreds with some poking and stirring. Since I don't add salt when cooking in the crock, be prepared to salt to your taste when it's finished.

I'd like to make this again with chicken thighs sometime.

I'm not one for spicy food so you could certainly use more of the Tex Mex tomatoes and less of the plain (or use a whole can of the Tex Mex and one good sized fresh tomato). The Tex Mex tomatoes are something we pick up at Wal-Mart, you could substitute about a cup of roasted tomato salsa (or more if you like things spicy).
Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 10:36 am
Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 07:42 am
Being a grown-up sucks. Dialing the internet back at work severely also sucks, but I am pretty desperate to be a good employee and all that assorted stuff. (For future job-hunting references to say good things about me.) Also, there's just a metric fuckton of work.

That said, I think I can get my Criminal Law final out of the way tonight and tomorrow. It's a two-parter, and then DONE. Legal Tech doesn't start until Saturday.

Thank you for the bingo card generator links yesterday! Wedding shower bingo at work is a go, and the cards are all pretty.

By the way, does anyone use Telegram on their phone? I've been trying to get away from text programs at work, and Telegram seems to put emphasis on being a secure chat program. Now that Facebook has bought Whatsapp, I don't want to use something that will track my history. I'm forced to use Facebook because the LARP uses it, but I'd rather not expand into more Facebook products.

Anyway. I would like to keep in touch more, and contacting me on my phone is a good idea for that.
Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 07:50 am
Fifty photos from the past.

I'd particularly like to draw your attention to this one:

Mount Rushmore, 1927

In case you don't recognize the place: this is Mount Rushmore in 1927, before we defiled it. Why did we do that, again? It's a lot prettier in this picture. Oh and incidentally the Black Hills are sacred to the Lakota.
Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 02:17 am
What can I say about today?

Work & lunch & stuff. )

The guest speaker was Ken Thompson. Everyone was very excited. It was an interview with one of the senior dudes, who had a compilation of prepared questions. It was great fun to listen to.

At one point, it transpired that Ken had brought something for show-and-tell, in case things got slow. It was an Enigma machine. We were duly impressed. He told the story of how he had come by it (lost the coin flip, but later inherited it) and the other fellow held it up so we all could see. Ooo.

Eventually they opened up the floor for questions. Ever since he'd mentioned Berkeley specifically by name, my brain had been going down the breaking-things path. (The story of my father vs. the variable speed card reader goes here.) As I listened and grabbed the occasional picture, I thought about what the best question might be. What about the most expensive thing he had broken?

Some questions later, it solidified in my mind, and I caught the attention of the guy with the microphone. I held it carefully as Ken answered the previous question (and handed it back to the guy who'd asked the previous question when he needed to clarify, because some things just need amplification). And soon enough it was my turn.

The question I asked was shaped a little like this: Breaking things can often be a significant part of a computer person's life. Could he talk a little bit about some of the more interesting times he tried to break something, broke something, or almost broke something?

I noticed absently that my voice, amplified and re-broadcast over the speakers, was clear, full of humor, and without raspiness or hesitation. It was a reasonably nice voice. Apparently I've been coming to terms with it.

The question was wildly popular; as I sat back, my #cupcake compatriots congratulated me on an excellent question. He settled in to give us context and then a hell of a story. I will do my best to relate it; I've been poking around to see if there's a better version up online elsewhere somewhere. However! There were no few times that he'd in fact had written permission to fuck all sorts of shit up, and in one particular workplace, they'd been in the habit of leaving little easter eggs for him inside the hospital mainframe, with taunting messages to the effect that he could never get this one. And in his pursuit of this particular one, he had managed to de-couple the login function from the password file that it was supposed to check, with the result that there would be no more logins. And he couldn't get them back together. (Appropriate noises from the audience.) However! He had two terminals open. And he was still logged in over there. And he managed to discern that he could make the login program check for a password against the terminal. And he did. And he was back in. And hooooooo boy the stuff he could get into. And after that, this trick was in his arsenal.

There were more questions, and more answers. Read more... )
Monday, April 21st, 2014 10:38 pm
(Gee, no, I don't have Closer to Fine on repeat right now. There's Galileo and a few other things thrown in there too. Along with CTF. Because... Yeah.)

So I have a ... very large amount ... of mental fuckery going down, and I want to document it; but I know that it's triggering for some people, and frustrating to sit through for just about everyone, and so I don't want to just do a "this is my journal, I post what I want" thing; but otoh private entries don't work the same. So I am doing a workaround of filtered entries on an opt in basis.


Want in?

(please understand that I am attaching no significance to whether or not any individual says yes or no. This is not a test of who loves me or anything like that, I promise. It's just that some people like seeing brain dumps and some people don't. And yes, this is a resurrection of the sigma filter, if you are already on the filter, I will keep you on unless you answer with no. For other people, default behavior will be to keep off unless you say yes.)

(entries in the filter may contain depression illogic, rabid weasels, suicidal ideation, self esteem issues, etc. I will try to remember to do content notes but can't guarantee perfection. Will also tag with [sigma] in case you want to filter.)

Poll #15258 ...I wrapped my fear around me like a blanket...
Open to: All, detailed results viewable to: Just the Poll Creator, participants: 12


11 (91.7%)

1 (8.3%)

0 (0.0%)