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Tuesday, November 23, 2004  permanent URL for this entry

End of Day Twenty-One: 34,061 (I think)
End of Day Twenty-Three: 37,000 (exactly)

And I didn't do it on purpose or anything; just felt like stopping, ran the word counter, and it said "37000". So clearly I shouldn't write any more tonight! *8)

So I have seven (more) days to do thirteen thousand words. Seems quite doable, so I'm continuing not to panic, although I still suspect that I should be. (Novel).

Jessamyn has a bunch of book reviews, and they have a syndication feed. (Similarwise, I have a buch of book reviews, and they have a syndication feed; small world! But she reads classier books than I do.)

Speaking of Jessamyn, from librarian dot net we learn about Google Scholar (which we'd heard about before but not bothered to look at), which is most importantly another place to see how famous we are. (We have some papers that don't show up in this simple search, or at least not near the top. But that's okay.)

From Susie Bright we learn about The Internet Sacred Text Archive, which is extremely cool. In there we find for instance the Ox Herding story, which reminds us of the ten bulls (we like the ten bulls version better, because it reminds us of the important stuff that comes after enlightenment; chopping wood and carrying water and all).

Indirectly from Pursed Lips we find The Ins and Outs of Teledildonics. I didn't realize this technology was finally here. It's been expected for a long time, natch; but so have flying cars.

Speaking of which, from I forget where we find the very important Is There Sex in Heaven?, which gives a nice and kooky (if rather monosexualist) treatment of the question, but then, as far as I can tell, doesn't quite get around to answering it (note the bit about intra-Trinity sex; something that somehow hadn't previously entered my mind).

From fafblog comes our Quote o' the Day:

"Don't be silly Giblets that isn't Santa," says me. "That's just one a Santa's helpers. They have the same markings as Santa in order to confuse predators."

I may or may not have mentioned that the other day some stock advisor cold-called me and tried to get me to invest lots and lots of money in Sirius Satellite Radio (which was at about two dollars the share at the time). We had a long and rather frustrating discussion about the advantages of index funds and how buying single stocks is so much like gambling, and about what reason I had to think that the likely rise in the stock price wasn't already factored into the current price, and so on. At the end he decided that I probably wasn't rich enough for him anyway and more or less hung up on me.

I figured I'd seen the last of him, but today he called back, gloating about how SIRI is now up above six dollars the share ("see, I told you an even number would come up on the wheel!", he didn't say), and how he wanted to take me through another opportunity that they had, and I should have a pencil and paper handy.

I really wasn't in the mood, so I said that really I wasn't going to get into any individual stock right now, and it'd just be a waste of both of our time and thanks and good-bye, and I hung up. As I put the phone down I could hear him yelling "Wait!".

Being an utter asshole, he called back immediately. He said "Are you a professional?", and I said "Yes...", and he said "So why did you hang up?". I said it was just a waste of our time, and he said, "But I showed you something that got over a hundred percent return!! What gets over a hundred percent --" And he was pretty much screaming into the phone when I hung it up the second time.

At least he didn't call back again.

I wish I could remember his name or the name of the company he was with, so I could spread the word here of what a total jerk he is, and what total jerks they employ. Are there really people in the world (in the market) for whom insults and screaming are an effective sales technique? Very odd.

Sunday, November 21, 2004  permanent URL for this entry

End of Day Seventeen: 32,107
End of Days Eighteen through Twenty: dunno (oops)
Currently: 34,061 (but for some reason I'm very calm)

So progress has for some reason been very questionable over the last few days. I should be to at least 37,800 by the end of today just to be keeping up with the bare minimum, but I suspect that I won't be, and I suspect it won't worry me too much.

I have this irrational feeling that I could just sit down anytime between now and the end of the month and write those last sixteen thousand words casually, off the top of my head, in an hour or so.

This is probably false, but I believe it anyway. (It's that kind of sentence, sincerely intended, that makes it so hard to do certain kinds of philsophy.)

So I read and made little notes on Barthelme's "Sadness" and Defoe's "Pirates!" (etc). Superfically similar in various ways, but I think almost entirely different any deeper than that.

I'm still reading (savouring, as they say) Lessing' "A Man and Two Women", bought on that day in Nyack. Lessing is just astoundingly, gloriously good. You should read her, and read this collection in particular, if you haven't.

I'm sitting here writing in my weblog (and not, you'll notice, in my novel), and listening to some music from Wired magazine on my iPod, which is awkwardly clinging to the front of my nightshirt. I'm immaturely attracted to the Oakley Thump (of course one's music should come directly from one's sunglasses), but apparently modern trendy geeks have perfect vision, or contacts, or Lasik, because it doesn't look like they'd get along very well with my glasses. (Not to mention my currently rather tiny gadget budget.)

("Gadget Budget")

So the Fall Lake Cleanup was scheduled for today, but it was foggy and chilly (and yesterday it was raining), which rather discouraged people. Specifically, me and three other of the Usual Suspects showed up (one with his teenage son) and brought in the floating dock and the lines, and decided that since the leaves were all wet they could just wait until Spring to be raked or whatever. I hung around until twelve-thirty (because the announcement suggested ten for early risers and noon for others), and one other Usual Suspect showed up to see if we were planning to rake. Then I went down again with my fudge at noon (because the announcement said noon for food), and sat there until noon-thirty just in case, but no one showed up.

It was lovely, actually, sitting in the fog by the lake, reading Doris Lessing in the pavillion by myself.


Regarding our trip last week to exotic Davis, California, readers write:

d00d. Stop with the Pacific time/Real Time shite -- if I could adjust, so can you.

do you really pass for an innocent youth ? :-)

Yellow is sodium. Blinding blue is mercury vapor.

PS: How dare you come to Sacto and not to SJ?! waaaaaaah

Hee hee. I expect that if I were to move coasts and then adjust, I would consider Pacific time to be real time. But now I live here, and so Eastern time is real time, and Pacific time is just odd.

I haven't seriously tried to pass for an innocent youth lately. At least not in any obvious sense. My internal self-image is relatively young and innocent. But actually trying to chat up attractive college freshmen would probably be ill-advised.

Apologies to the SJ reader. I'm very bad at combining social visits with business trips; I always schedule things so as to get back home more or less as quickly as possible. Homebody and all.

Subject: catch this chance considering our super natural situation cardamom



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