"Luck? Sure. But only after long practice and only with the ability to think under pressure." -- Mildred Ella ("Babe") Didrikson Zaharias (b. 1911-06-26, d. 1956-09-27), American athlete (basketball, track & field, golf) and musician (vocals, harmonica) (via Jone Johnson Lewis' collection of quotations on about.com)
[Happy birthday to Louise Rogow Howard, who changed my life many years ago with an unexpected party invitation.]
"It is astounding to realize that Tweety Bird and Yosemite Sam are the same man!" -- movie critic Leonard Maltin
"There's never been a law yet that didn't have a ridiculous consequence in some unusual situation; there's probably never been a government program that didn't accidentally benefit someone it wasn't intended to. Most people who work in government understand that what you do about it is fix the problem -- you don't just attack the whole government." -- Molly Ivins (via Jone Johnson Lewis' collection of quotations on about.com)
[The latest trend seems to be, at least with regard to LTBGQ issues, to draft laws that have a ridiculous intent, that then have side-consequences that can be either more absurd or less absurd than the intended effects. For example, anti-trans-women laws that would force trans men into women's restrooms and likely make the folks supposedly "protected" even more uncomfortable. (The huge discomfort and cognitive dissonance thrust upon trans people is, no doubt, intended.]
"As near as I can figure most people have regular lives, not defined by sex, no matter what their orientation is. It's just not the most important thing. They love each other, go to the store, have dinner, and do whatever like everyone else. You don't get to choose what turns you on. You get what you get and have to deal with it. It's a shame we can't just let people be who they are. it's nobody's business but your own anyway. I dunno, I'm not a social justice guy. I don't spend a lot of time thinking stuff out like that. It just seems like people should be excellent to each other." -- Crave (author/artist of Between Failures), 2014-01-27 (blog underneath comic)
Quotation of the day mailing list, 2015-03-17:
"The power of Selma is hope - hope that change can happen. It's not a passive hope, but a hope that demands that we make the necessary trouble that will build a better world." -- Elizabeth Warren, U.S. Senator, on the civil rights marches from Selma, Alabama in 1965.
(submitted to the mailing list by Patsy Wang-Iverson)
"Mind you, I don't think DHS is that creative. Government tends to regard creativity as a last resort, even in times of war." -- abb3w, 2007-11-01
"Once an ex-partner told me "You look better in jeans and a tshirt. Why do you wear dresses? Why do you wear make up? You don"t have to dress up to impress me." That moment led me to so many realizations. It made me realize that most people think femininity is an act to impress men. It was then that I was 100% sure my dressing up wasn"t for him at all, I didn"t at all care if a partner disliked my dresses, or makeup. I was wearing them for me. And it was then, that I realized that continuing to wearing dresses just for myself was a totally valid way to say a big FUCK YOU to the patriarchy." -- Amy Wibowo (@sailorhg), 2015-01-31 (posted as text 2015-03-04)
[This is not the most important point in the talk/article, just the one I felt like quoting today.]
Happy start of astronomical spring, y'all! (22:45 UTC / 18:45 EDT) I know some of you (including folks near me) have snow in the forecast. So I guess meteorological spring will be along a little later.
"Fantasy is an exercise bicycle for the mind. It might not take you anywhere, but it tones up the muscles that can." -- Terry Pratchett (b. 1948-04-28, d. 2015-03-12)
"I once absent-mindedly ordered Three Mile Island dressing in a restaurant and, with great presence of mind, they brought Thousand Island Dressing and a bottle of chili sauce." -- Terry Pratchett
"When anyone asks me about the Irish character, I say look at the trees. Maimed, stark and misshapen, but ferociously tenacious." -- Edna O'Brien (b. 1930-12-15)
From the Quotation of the day mailing list, 2015-01-14:
"No theoretical checks--no form of government can render us secure. To suppose that any form of government will secure liberty or happiness without any virtue in the people, is a chimerical idea. If there be sufficient virtue and intelligence in the community, it will be exercised in the selection of these men. So that we do not depend on their virtue, or put confidence in our rulers, but in the people who are to choose them." -- James Madison, Virginia Ratifying Convention (20 June 1788).
(submitted to the mailing list by Mike Krawchuk)
"This is the kind of asshole that will stab you in the back and complain that you got his knife dirty." -- Jake H. (commenter at creativeloafing.com), on John Oxendine, 2009-10-17
[I don't know much about Mr. Oxendine; I liked the phrasing.]
"I don't have time to be worried about society's expectations. The world asks for everything and gives nothing." -- @FirmieFirms, 2015-02-22
"In my search for answers about who I was, I pored over religious texts in search of enlightenment. My understanding was that according to most Christian beliefs, being trans or gay was a sin, cut and dry. What I found, however, was that while there were some Bible passages that could be interpreted to hint at that, there were more that came with a message of loving those unlike you, taking care of relatives, and not judging others." -- Parker Molloy, "Dear Leelah, We Will Fight On For You: A Letter to a Dead Trans Teen", 2015-01-01
"I find the wailing of an infant lends urgency to public debate." -- Amy, in Bobbins by John Allison, 2015-01-05, explaining her decision to bring her child to a town council meeting
"It's not mad scientists we have to worry about - it's mad engineers!" -- Sheepie (telephone conversation 2015-02-07)
From the Quotation of the day mailing list, 2014-05-27:
"And so it occurred to me (after my fifth pint of IPA) to spin my speculative political satire around the fact that there is only one man on the global political scene today who has what it takes to be a plausible Republican candidate for President Of The United States at the next presidential election.
"This man: Vladimir Vladimirovitch Putin.
"Let me enumerate the ways in which this man makes sense as a candidate. He's only 62 years old--not as youthful as Barack Obama, but still well within the age range for POTUS. He has proven experience of leading an aggressive, declining, former military superpower bristling with nuclear weapons and suffering from eating disorders and a tendency to binge on breakaway republics when nobody is looking. As a former KGB Colonel he understands the needs of the security state like no US president before him, except possibly George H. W. Bush (a former Director ofthe CIA); he's exactly the right man to be in charge of the NSA, post-Snowden. As a Russian he clearly likes his tea, so he'll go down well with that wing of the party. Nobody can accuse him of being soft on terrorism, or communism, or gay rights. Nobody can question his virile, macho manhood either, not with his state-run press agency circulating photographs of him bareback-riding a bear. He's an instinctive authoritarian, a daddy figure, totally in love with god, guts, and guns--and if anyone says otherwise he'll put powdered Polonium in their soup."
-- Charlie Stross, writer.
(submitted to the mailing list by Terry Labach)
I'm gonna need some help. Which I suck at asking for or figuring out how to use. But I'm gonna try.
Mom's long-anticipated move to the Eastern Shore (my sister's new place in Centreville) is now a reality, packing has begun, and a date has been set for loading Mom's stuff into a truck and hauling it and her across the bridge (though I'm not certain how firmly that date is set). The house in Bowie will be prepared for renting out, and I'll be moving back to the house in Baltimore. Which needs a lot of work that, between time spent watching out for Mom and times when my own health issues have gotten in the way, I haven't been able to get to. I'll have a couple weeks to get stuff done after Mom leaves, but if I can get any of this done before then, so much the better. And in any case, with how few hours of activity I usually get before I run out of spoons, I could definitely use help. (My backup plan is to just do everything as quickly as my body and other demands on my time (like being here to mind Mom) allow. But it's slowly dawning on me that ... it's a lot.)
And the asking is stressful, so this is going to be like, half stream-of-consciousness. Sorry.
I need to get the back door opened and re-keyed, plumbing repaired (which requires access to the porch via the back door), the oil tank and furnace checked out (which would probably be best timed for when the plumber is there), and windows repaired or replaced. It would be a great help if someone could be there to let the locksmith, plumber, boiler tech, etc. in while I'm still taking care of Mom, though if that doesn't work out, I'll try to rush all of that after Mom leaves Bowie. (Or if one of y'all with the relevant skills wants to get my back door open and replace the deadbolt, that'll work too, instead of calling a locksmith.)
I also need to start running vanloads of my stuff from Bowie up to Baltimore, but because of too many "no time to think or plan, just move everything from this floor to that floor and pile it however" incidents ... I could use help clearing space to put what gets carried up there. The place is in a frankly embarassing state, be warned. Y'all be warned. I'll be sitting here feeling embarassed. *sigh*
One bit that'll help with making space is hauling the three 8x12 segments of the tent platform for my old tent, out of the dining room. I'm giving up on the idea of trying to get that to Pennsic and finding a buyer for it. If any of y'all want it, fine; if not, it can go on the sidewalk. It was pretty cool when I had means to transport it easily and a tent that fit on it, but I haven't used it in a few years. Um, I should also (with help) haul a couple of ancient mattresses and box springs that are no longer even emergency-guest-bed condition, out to the curb.
Meanwhile, in Bowie, I need to relocate my stuff to the designated "out of the way of the teens my sister will hire to load Mom's furniture into a truck" room, by moving day (earlier would be better so as to facilitate Mom's packing). I think I can do that part myself, but I won't turn down help.
At some point in all of this, I hope to obtain some mildew-bombs and de-mildew at least my basement -- whether I need help with that depends on timing -- when I get the foggers and when the plumber et al will be there.
I need to get measurements of all the doorways a new clothes-dryer will have to pass through. And, um, clear out some stuff that'd be in the way of that.
I could also use help cleaning my kitchen and organizing it better, but that's not so much a moving thing as a general ongoing living thing. Note that I think this'll involve borrowing a pressure-washer and taking the top of the stove outside.
Other stuff not on a particular schedule:
The last word from my sister is that she plans to move Mom this coming Saturday, 14 March, but I'm guessing that the schedule will slip another week based on how much packing there is left to do here, of Mom's stuff. I should have another couple weeks after whenever Mom moves, to get the most urgent bits of my house taken care of.
It's a lot to ask, and I know that. And I know I've had to lean on some of you a lot more than I've been able to be leaned on, especially these past several years. But please, if any of this is something you can help with, please call/email/text me -- I'll even check my FaceBook messages this week -- and we'll try to work out timing. Thanks.
"Airlines have also complained loudly about increased DST. When DST was lengthened, the Air Transport Association estimated that the schedule-juggling necessary to keep U.S. flights lined up with international travel would cost the industry $147 million. DST hurts other transportation interests, too: Amtrak is known to halt its overnight trains for an hour when clocks change in November so they don't show up and leave from their 3 a.m. destinations early. In the spring, trains have to try to make up lost time so they can stick to the schedule.
"DST might also cost employers in the form of lost productivity. A 2012 study found that workers were more likely to cyberloaf -- doing non-work-related things on their computers during the day -- on the Monday after a DST switch. Study participants who lost an hour of sleep ended up wasting 20 percent of their time."
-- Rachel Feltman, "Five myths about daylight saving time", 2015-03-06
[I hate the time change a little bit more each year even though my personal schedule is mostly pretty flexible. My first choice would be to stay on standard time year 'round -- let clock-noon stay close to solar-noon, eh? -- but I would be nearly as happy just staying on DST year 'round. This switching back and forth is stupid. If your business needs a different schedule when days are shorter, or if you personally prefer a different schedule then, just change your hours for those months -- don't change everybody's clocks. *grrrr*]
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