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Hey, Buffyverse oldtimers

There's been some discussion of the old Buffy usenet groups and the founding of BAPS over on Tumblr, and I'm trying to remember the particulars. I know Alane and Laurie were the founders, but there was another Alane on the list, was there not? And was DesertRoaz from Usenet a separate person?

Calling shipperx and fenchurche if they're still around...

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Blast from the past

Last week we got a post card from some fan related enterprise (a comic store or a local convention or something, I forget) addressed to Tower Mountain. We figured someone must have bought some old mailing lists, back from the days when I was the zine editor. Last night I got an email from someone asking of Tower Mountain Holt was still active. The name was vaguely familiar; I think they were one of our subscribing members way back when. I told them no, it wasn't. O_o :Twilight zone music:

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The excitement for today

We had Mom over for dinner tonight, so we were walking Bo a little later than usual. It was just about getting dark. We'd made our rounds of the park and were on our way home, when we realized there was an elderly woman sitting on the sidewalk ahead of us, clutching the leash of a small mutt-terrier sort of dog. The mutt-terrier was wandering around and being unhelpful after the manner of dogs whose person has unaccountably failed to proceed with the walk. Kathy asked if she was all right, and she said no, and then we realized she had blood all over her face. She'd tripped on an uneven part of the sidewalk and couldn't get up by herself. So we helped her up, and walked her back to her apartment building (which was luckily only a block or two away) whilst trying to keep the mutt-terrier from trying to take Bo on with one paw tied behind his back. Bo graciously refrained from eating him in two bites. Once there we turned her over to her neighbors, who said they'd help her get cleaned up and take her to the ER if necessary. The mutt-terrier grudgingly sniffed noses with Bo, and we headed on home.

We have GOT to remember to bring a phone along. If she hadn't been able to walk on her own – well, I guess I could have run over to the Angry Crab and asked to use their phone. Still.

I say she was an elderly woman, but she was probably only ten years older than I am, fifteen tops. I'm fifty-four. I don't feel terribly old. I'm in better shape now than I was in my thirties and forties, when I was, without realizing it, suffering the effects of untreated hypothyroidism and high blood pressure. I'm definitely better off than my Mom was at my age, since I have so far shown no signs of arthritis or macular degeneration. And she didn't reach the I've-fallen-and-I-can't-get-up stage until her late 80s. But I see things like that and wonder if at some point a switch will flip, and I will suddenly be Old and Frail.

I tried making fig bread today, using a granola date bread recipe and subbing in figs, but it didn't come out as well as I'd hoped. I'll have to experiment further.

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Some not so terrible things

Like watching the nighthawks in the park while walking the dog. It's very soothing. It's supposed to cool down to 105 or so by next Saturday, and there's even a small chance of rain in the forecast. Which can't come soon enough; I've been trying to keep the yard from dying off entirely, and this month's water bill is going to be a killer.

I was braced for more bad news about the Supreme Court decisions that were scheduled to come down today, but for once, I was pleasantly surprised. I think these were some of the cases that the Republicans were most hoping that holding up Obama's nomination for a new judge would turn in their favor, but it didn't work out that way. Plus Clinton and Warren tag-teaming Trump gives me life, as the kids on Tumblr say.

I finally figured out how to untangle most of the action sequence for the last chapter of Little Sister, the logistics of which has been puzzling me for quite awhile. Now if I can just get off my butt and write the damned thing...

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I wish I could say it was hard to believe the results of the Brexit vote, but unfortunately with the rise of reactionary right-wing ideologies across the board, it isn't. I've seen some people complaining that they didn't vote Leave because of immigration, so how dare people lump them together with the racists, but... you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas. Still, the US didn't collapse when Congress pulled that idiocy and let the sanctions kick in a few years ago, so hopefully the UK will manage to control the economic damage somehow. Though if Scotland leaves the UK over this... oh the irony.

I did think it was pretty rich hearing Boris make that oily speech about how the UK is still European, though.

In other news, I wanted to get a piece of granite to do stamping for leatherwork, so i can make a proper holster for the gun that goes with my steampunk costume. So we went out to a place that installs granite countertops, and they told us we could take any of the scraps in the dumpster for free. I took one little piece for stamping, and there was one larger piece, about three by four, a whole half counter top, which we made off with as well. I used a Home Depot gift certificate that framefolly sent for my birthday to get a wet/dry tile saw so I can trim up the broken parts. I'm going to try to make a craft table out of it. No idea where I'll put it; there's certainly no room in the house. But it's really pretty, so I'll think of something.

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The lesson for today

So I went to a meet up with some Elysian Fields peeps at Phoenix Comicon on Saturday night, and they convinced me to go to the James Marsters panel on Sunday. The meet-up was awesome -- bewilde, feliciacraft, and Soaringclaws from Tumblr. The panel was fun; I'd heard most of the questions before from a zillion videos of previous con panels, but JM is a very entertaining speaker, and has a knack for answering everything as though it's the first time he's ever heard someone ask that. And we ran into Demandingbillydolls/Cupcakecute afterwards, which was also cool.

So I came back to work Monday in a fairly good mood, and immediately discovered that two more people in my department had been laid off. Plus, as the day wore on, it became apparent that I had caught some kind of creeping grot while I was at the convention center, and now I'm sneezing and sniffling and my throat is all sore. Pray that the Kleenex hold out.

So the lesson for today is, never have fun.


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Voting so far!

This is how the Unappetizing Thing votes stack up so far:

Your Hat was eliminated because it's not a food item.

Raccoon and casu marzu were eliminated because they are not available in my area for the time and money limits stated.

The following have been eliminated because I've already eaten them:

vienna sausages
Canned peas
chipped beef on toast
Liver and onions

Rocky Mountain oysters have the lead, but it depends on how you count -- if you take menudo, tripe, and tripitas and combine them because they're different ways of preparing the same thing, then tripe is a clear leader with 6 votes.

Rocky Mountain oysters 4
menudo 3
brains 2
Tripe 2
Natto 2
Canned Haggis 2
frog's legs 2
Head cheese 2
Durian 2
vegemite tacos 1
sea cucumber 1
boiled eggs with Marmite soldiers 1
tripitas 1
hákarl 1
mämmi 1
Balute 1
beetroot sandwiches 1
Weetabix with cheap red wine 1
Lutefisk 1

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Gaze in Awe

Upon the glory of modern washing machine technology!

Our old machine (a 30-year-old Kenmore) has been making weird noises off and on for awhile now, and we've been talking in a desultory way about getting a new one some day. As of last week, it started leaking from someplace underneath whenever we used a warm water wash cycle. I thought hard about whether I should try to get it repaired or get a new one, and finally decided on the latter. So Monday night we cheated Bo of his walk and took him to Home Deport instead to look at washing machines. After half an hour or so of comparision and debate, we went with LG over the Samsung. (Despite the fact that the Kenmore has been a damned good workhorse of a machine for decades, I am wary of buying anything from Sears these days, as it's gone way downhill.) They delivered it today and had the old one out and the new one in within twenty minutes -- and it only took that long because I wanted to clean the accumulated crud off the floor before they installed the new one.

This machine gets very good reviews, conserves water, can wash bulky items like comforters, and uses about a sixth as much energy per year as the old one. I don't know if it will last thirty years, but right now it's awfully nice.

The other minor excitement of last weekend was that some of the Decorative Rusty Shit we got for the gazebo takes the form of twisted iron rods about three feet long, with a twirly thing in the middle. We'd originally thought we were going to put them in the same place as those hand print things, but as it turned out, the rods were too long, or the hand prints were too narrow, because they wouldn't fit in the same frame. So we ended up standing the twirly rods upright between a couple of 2x4s with holes drilled in them to make a sort of screen, like this:

And while we were putting it together, one of them slipped out of its hole and conked me on the head. Luckily it was tipping over slowly and from a short distance rather than being swung violently or from a great height, but it still smarted, and the place where it hit has been a bit sore. No bruises, though, so I can't elicit pity and horror from onlookers.

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Glass, surprisingly enough, half full

So! You may or may not have heard that in the latest issue of the Buffy comics, the thing that everyone's been predicting since Spike and Buffy got together has happened. Bummer. But to put things in perspective, I'm gonna link to this post I made a few years ago.

For those who can't be arsed to click the link, I made that post in the middle of S9. I was so convinced that Buffy and Spike would never be a thing in the comics at all, ever, that I made a bet to that effect:

I hereby solemnly swear that if Buffy and Spike end up in a romantic relationship in the comics, I will eat one (1) Unappetizing Thing, to be determined by my flist! In order to qualify as a romantic relationship under the terms of this wager:

A. Both must enter into the relationship freely and of their own will.
B. Both must agree that they are in a relationship.
C. Both must agree upon what type of relationship it is – friends with benefits, boyfriend/girlfriend, etc.
D: Both must publicly acknowledge said relationship.
E: The relationship must be, on the whole, a positive experience for both of them.
F: Last a minimum of half a 'season.'

The above terms must be plainly stated in the text in order to be satisfied. Subtext or 'negative space' does not count. Extra credit will be awarded if said relationship does not end in death, disaster, or apocalypse within one season.

In order to qualify as an Unappetizing Thing under the terms of the wager, the Thing must be:

A. A real dish customarily eaten by some group of people somewhere. i.e. no thumbtacks, motor oil, etc.
B. Available in Phoenix AZ, USA for a reasonable expenditure of time and money. It cannot be anything which would take more than two weeks or fifty dollars to procure.
C. Something I have not already tried. (Dried ants, pig's blood soup, and jellyfish are already out of the running. For what it's worth, I liked all of them.)
D. NO type of mushroom or fungus. I have a phobia about them, and I will not eat them, no way no how, even in the cause of getting Buffy and Spike laid. (Moldy cheese is acceptable in cases where the mold is authorized to be there.)

It's doubtful that we're going to get that extra credit, but even if this issue counts as a breakup, Buffy and Spike got together in issue 11, and stayed together through issue 26. That's one issue more than half of a 30-issue season. So I have officially lost the bet, I will undertake to eat the Unappetizing Thing, and YOU get to decide what it is! If you are so inclined, you can click on the link above and vote in the Unappetizing Thing poll. I'll leave it open until May 31, 2016, and then I'll tally up the votes, and eat the Thing, whatever it may be. I believe that the poll takes anon votes if you don't have a Dreamwidth account, but if it doesn't, just leave your vote in the comments.

I'm not 100% thrilled with the way the comic's handled everything this season, but looking back at my posts from S8 and S9? It could be SO much worse.

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DIY Weekend

Progress from last weekend and this weekend:

Read more...Collapse )

Still a fair bit to do: pour cement into the last two bases for the decorative iron stuff, water seal all the wood, put hooks along the beams so we can hang lights, put hooks on the outside of the west side so we can fasten up the sun sail properly, dig holes for the new positions of the wrought iron tiki torches and set them in concrete, and possibly hang a few more decorative thingummies. I'm really happy with the way it's going; I think we'll be done with all the major construction by next weekend and then it will just be finishing touches.

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July 2016



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