taerowyn: (Default)
Man have I been neglecting this place. Not in the reading--still visiting my friends page almost daily--but the writing? Um....hi 6+ months ago, when I last posted.

I just....haven't been producing much. Some of it is the whole migration to Facebook/Twitter. But a lot of it has just been <0 desire to really write.

So, just a note to say....I'm alive. I'm reading. I'm just not posting all that much...
taerowyn: (Default)
Home for the holidays. Been grand so far, though have missed schwa242 and mezdeathhead.

Dinner with the girls (i.e. friends I've known since about first grade) and then we joined up with some friends who also live in Boston. Married couple and the wife is from here and friends with my friends, but we didn't get really close til she and her husband moved to Boston. Surreal to be hanging out with them in CO instead of MA.

Traditional (for us) Christmas Eve feast of Vietnamese food and then a round of games with family friends. Telephone Pictionary is just too much fun, and the silliness abounds.

Christmas was low key, but nice. Happiness with presents all around. Schwa242 and I were obviously on the same wavelength as we both got Mom necklaces and Dad books on cartoonists (Sergio Aragones from him, Gary Trudeau from me).

M&D and I went to see Unstoppable. Really getting to like Chris Pine. The title of the movie was not just about the trains, but about the tension level. All three of us were just wrung out from tensing up for more than an hour. It's not high art in any way, but definitely a fun ride.

Now it's just the slow unwind to New Year's eve (flying back that day...and an I say how GLAD I am that my travel plans weren't any time around the snowpacalypse this year?)

My New Years Resolution(s) this year are no new books and no new yarn. Did the no new books one year and it was probably the only Resolution I ever stuck to. I just have so many unread books on my shelves (and so much unused yarn in my stash) that I need to get through some of those before I should be allowed to buy more.

Course it's not the New Year *yet* so I just put in an order at my local book shop for a handful more books. Mostly work-related and having to do with my new position, but should be interesting. They should be ready for me to pick up the day I get back.

Anyway, hope the holidays are treating all of you (if there are any of you left on LJ :P ) well and that the New Year brings you all you hope for...
taerowyn: (Default)
There's something blissful about curling up on your couch on a rainy day with a cup of coffee and your choice of internet, books, movies, knitting, people-watching out your window. I may not move all day.
taerowyn: (Attitude)
Some friends from back in CO are pulling together a...well, really, their words are best, "a one-of-a-kind, Vaudeville Nouveau-meets-Wile E. Coyote, all-American, 1/4 European, contraption-riddled, quirky, character-driven, RISK-TAKING, expectation-breaking, object-manipulating, CIRCUS-infused, standing-ovation-inducing, THEATRICAL EXTRAVAGANZA featuring classic routines from slapstick to chainsaw juggling, serenading to swing dancing, the Ladder of Love, the Human Cannonball and more!."

I knew these guys when they were just starting out as street performers in Ft. Collins....now they're off to do an Off-Broadway show. And they've got a Kickstarter* going to make sure the show is the biggest, bestest it can be.

Anyway, I'm already throwing some money in the pot, but I figured the best thing I could do is to spread the word. So if you've a buck or two to spare (or more, of course, but minimum pledge really is only a dollar) and think the world would be that much happier if there was more "Vaudeville Nouveau-meets-Wile E. Coyote" in the world (and how could you not?) then why not add to the fun?

And if you're in NYC? Totally worth picking up a ticket.

*Unfamiliar with Kickstarter? It's a great "crowd-funding" resource that creates "a new way to fund creative ideas and ambitious endeavors." It's based on the beliefs that:

• A good idea, communicated well, can spread fast and wide.
• A large group of people can be a tremendous source of money and encouragement.

The primary drive behind it is their all-or-nothing model. If a project is not fully-funded through the pledges submitted, no money changes hands.
taerowyn: (Default)
Was already feeling some general internet hate for multiple reasons that I won't go into here, only to come home to find that LJ has fallen into the lure of "EVERYTHINGMUSTCONNECTTOEVERYTHING!!!1!1!"


I am under no illusion that I can keep my real identity separate from this journal...however, I do try to limit possible crossover.

I am also under no illusion that anything said here might not catch up to e down the road anyway...if it's on the internet, no matter how pinned down w/ privacy settings, it's findable and it's never deletable.

That said, I respect what the friends lock is TRYING to do, and I'd appreciate it if my LJ friends did too.

So dear readers of my LJ, if I post something under friends lock, please don't use Facebook/Twitter connect to post related comments to said networks (and thus lead folks back to a "private" post). I promise to return the favor.

Even better would be to not connect to comments on any of my posts. If you want to connect w/ me on Twitter or Facebook, let me know, I'll pass along the info. Cause frankly, for the most part, I like to keep them pretty separate, which is why I'm already connected to a number of you in all three places.


Aug. 26th, 2010 07:34 pm
taerowyn: (Default)
About a month ago, I learned about this crazy cool contest the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry was running where someone would get the chance to *live* in the museum for a month.

I immediately thought of several friends who would rock at that, so I posted it on Facebook.

After a week or two of it percolating in my brain, I decided, screw my friends, *I* would rock at that.

Of course, by the time I decided to apply, the deadline was a looming so I scrambled to get materials together (even went so far as to go from just a little video knowledge to having know-how and equipment to shoot video and burn to DVD-player playable DVD in the course of a weekend).

Of course, being that rushed, it probably wasn't the best of work, so I didn't have that high of hopes. Hearing that 1,500+ applied and my hopes weren't any higher.

And I was right...got the rejection email today.

Not all that surprising, but I'm more bummed about it than I expected. Think that maybe it's less about losing the opportunity (which I didn't necessarily have and didn't expect) but losing that "what if...?" Cause I definitely have had moments over the past couple weeks of "What if..." and they've been fun to delve into. But alas, no more. :(
taerowyn: (Default)
Haven't been posting much late. Part of it is the Twitter/Facebook attention diversion--with them, I can let myself be frivolous cause it's short-form and there's not really enough real estate to really explore anything. But here, I feel I should use the media format and the space to actually delve into things and right now? I just don't know where to start...

It's just....it's too much of late. A recent HuffPo piece by Charles Karel Bouley really crystallized it for me:

Yesterday, I closed my syndicated radio show by stating, "Well, the disaster in the Gulf caused by the felons BP is worse today than yesterday. We are no clearer on our mission or its success in Afghanistan but lost a general in great political theater that does nothing to keep my friend, Eric, safe in-country right now (he's in Afghanistan in the Army). We then took a General that MoveOn.org once called General Betray Us, one that Obama then skipped the vote to condemn MoveOn.org for the attack as Republicans wanted, have Orin Hatch of Utah wanting to drug test the unemployed to allow them to get benefits which only further victimizes the poor (there's no provision for medical marijuana, either), lost two soldiers in Afghanistan and have no end in sight really for the worst ecological disaster of all time while a federal judge with lots of oil industry and Halliburton holdings says drill baby, drill. Oh and new home sales plummeted to their lowest ever, in history as unemployment in states like California soared as benefits run out because Congress is three weeks late approving another extension...but don't worry, it's only Wednesday...."

Any one of the incidents or situations should ground us as a nation. Stop us from whatever we are doing, make us take a pause, solve the problem, even if it takes time and sacrifice. But they don't, they blend, they merge, they become news stories and sound bytes and water cooler conversations (does anyone have those any more since, well, no one is working in offices that can afford to rent coolers any more...). They have to, even 9/11 has to, or else we'd be even more medicated than we are right now.

It doesn't help that at work, I see passionate people trying to do everything in their power to right just a fraction of some of the ills of the world today and continually being blocked at every turn.

I often joke that my job is a pendulum between "We can do this!" and "We are so, so screwed." Of late I feel we've stalled out on the latter. And it's not just the issues we work on, but everything Bouley mentions above and more.

And I know ideas like hope and change have been hijacked as slogans and are now fraught with partisan meaning, but I do wonder how we can find them beyond the rhetoric of one man's speeches. One of my favorite quotes is from anthropologist Margaret Mead, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

I gotta admit. I'm starting to doubt.

And I wonder....what's it going to take to break out of this place where we are. Bouley continues:

I understand why many of you can't or won't feel it as deeply, or tire of it, but we must remember today more than ever that we are human. The immigration debate isn't about illegals, it's about people. Humans. The Gulf Disaster isn't about who can or should drill where, it's about us causing an event so catastrophic we have yet to see the outcome, hell, it's not even anywhere close to being over. It's a game changer, a life changer, a country changer or should be. It should be the death knell of oil and big energy companies. Period. Don't you feel it? Can't you feel it? Won't you?

The same with war. Aren't you weary of it for any reasons any more? Weary, tired, human thing again. A billion a day on foreign oil, billions more to fight wars to protect it, Iraq and Afghanistan tie directly in to the Gulf. It's all related, everything in the news. And it's all about people, not things, not adjectives, people.

It's time to take a step back. To breathe in; to breathe deeply. Yes, you'll choke on the toxic fumes of the Gulf, but once you recover, you'll be inspired. Another emotion we need to feel. Inspiration. It's been a while since America has felt it as a whole. If we begin to feel through all these events, and the pain they will cause (and they will, they still do because we don't feel our way through then heal, we move on without healing); but if we move through that pain we'll make something so much better than what we have now.

If we don't start to feel more, more pain, more outrage, more of a need to sacrifice to make things better, then we sold our lives and souls to corporate America and like all of our gadgets our battery life as a nation is running out. The only way to recharge is to go back to basics; humanity.
taerowyn: (Ohballs)
Woke up this morning to find that part of our living room ceiling had caved in due to a leak in the roof. Thankfully it must have happened in the morning as the sofa under the hole was only dripped on a little bit (though covered in soggy plaster) and cleaned up fairly easily. Th majority of the damage is in the roof and walls which, while a pain, are the landlady's responsibility and she's already got a contractor coming by tomorrow.

That would have been enough on it's own, but I just got a text from my roommate asking if I knew anybody with a wet-vac as her office is up to their ankles in water (they run a youth program on the weekends, hence why she was in on a Sunday)

Just...yeah...it can stop raining *any* time now.
taerowyn: (Default)
So awhile ago, I figured out that I could read while I knit. You can imagine the amount of glee this inspired. However, it only works with words on a screen (manipulating a physical book, yarn, and a pair of needles at the same time does not work for me...yarn, needles and a button? This I can do), so I've been reading things off my little Asus eee, but not the kinds of things I really *want* to be reading i.e. current books in many different genres.

And so, I find myself contemplating buying an e-reader.

Which is where you lovely people come in. For various reasons--format, certain specs, and oh yeah, Amazon can be a dick--I'm leaning towards the Nook. Anybody have thoughts yay or nay? Recommendation in another direction?

Inquiring minds want to know (or, at least THIS inquiring mind does).
taerowyn: (Amused)
Had the kind of directional epiphany today that only Boston can bring:

I've always driven to my closest Home Depot through this inconvenient, convoluted route (defined by Google Maps) that, 4 out of 5 times, I screw up on my first attempt.

I've always driven to my closest big craft store via a straight forward, easy route.

Today, I was at Home Depot and needed to get a computer cord. There was a Circuit City next door, but obviously that was out, so I asked for the closest place. Cashier told me to take the back exit from the lot and on the other side of some empty lots/construction is a shopping center that includes a Staples.

Of course, it's the same shopping center with my craft store. *head desk* So basically Home Depot and the craft store are about a block from each other and I just then made the connection. Curse you Boston and your convoluted traffic patterns :P
taerowyn: (Ohballs)
What I thought was general current events-based depression/malaise turns out to be the stomach flu. Yay?
taerowyn: (Amused)
I bought some yarn today.

I gotta tell you, it's getting to the point where the rarer days will be when I say "I didn't buy any yarn today."


Off to see if I can make it fit in my yarn trunk or if it's finally time to reconfigure where I stash my, well...stash.

Also...anybody into knitting, crochet, fiber crafts, etc. in the Boston area should totally check out Boston Fibercamp. It's this weekend. You know you wanna...
taerowyn: (Default)
I realize it's a holiday weekend, but you'd think that more than 48 hours of snow would constitute a snow emergency (seeing as they're usually called at a predicted 4" and I'm pretty sure we're going to end up with at least 3xs that.)

Ah well, I in my pjs, sipping tea and eating oatmeal with no plans to leave the house til tomorrow except for a shovel expedition or two. Just hoping the 2nd floor neighbors don't demand their spot in the driveway as my car is at the very front (has been since the holidays) and my roommate has rented a car for the next few months so she can get up to VT to teach skiing.

I'm taking the fact that one of them shoveled the sidewalks, except not the stretch that includes our driveway (a system I've never understood, as it's not like pedestrians aren't going to walk on that stretch) as a sign that they won't be needing it. Fingers crossed.
taerowyn: (Default)
Man, long time, no post. So long in fact, that I can't even do one of those "first sentence of the first post of each month" year end recaps since I haven't posted since, oh, September.

Mostly it's been a matter of my online time/sharing being eaten up by Twitter/Facebook. I still come here to catch up on all my reading and what you guys are doing, but my urge to post has slipped quite a bit thanks to those outlets. Add to that, I'm in the process of setting up my own WordPress powered site and you've got the makings of...look at that...months without posts.

I'm guessing nobody wants a regurgitation of what the past three months have entailed. Suffice it to say I've been busy. Content, but busy.

And in CO twice (where I am now in fact).

Winding up a long visit (will be 2+ weeks by the tie I leave). Pretty funny that I've been here for almost two weeks at this point and haven't really socialized with anybody other than family or family friends (ie non of my old friends). Will do that in a mad rush over the next few days. Basically I've just been in full on homebody mode...and loving it.

Anyway, spectacular Christmas, what looks to be a fairly tame New Year and then back to Boston. I'll try to post more often, but I refuse to cross-post as I feel DW/LJ and twitter are very different mediums and I'm on twitter quite a lot, which would get old from a DW/LJ perspective.

OH, and speaking of DW/LJ, I still have unused Dreamwidth invite codes if anybody wants one.
taerowyn: (Happy ME)
I haven't been in school for more than 5 years now. So how come, when September rolls around, my life still goes crazy?

Work was INSANE today. To the point where I left at 5:30 to do more work at home just so I could legitimately hide from phone calls and emails. And a quarter of the insanity was trying to juggle the competing schedules to plan out next week's insanity.

I already told my boss I was calling out sick for all of next week...she denied my request.


Then there's my social calendar. OK, really, I mostly have myself to blame for this. I'm making a concerted effort to get out more...both on the "good to meet new people" front as well as the "networking for work" front (I really hate networking...and I'm not that good at it, but I'm still trying!). This means I'm actually saying yes to 80% of the networking events that cross my path. Apparently there's a BIG uptick for those around the start of school.

I'm also trying to be better at keeping in touch with the people, i.e. friends in the city that I don't see very often despite living in the same city. Been slowly moving down my list, going out for dinner/drinks to catch up. By the time I hit the bottom of the list, I'll probably have to start over :P

And then I'm trying to pull together a more packaged/professional web presence...partly to force myself to write more/partly to beef up said professional web presence "just in case." Seeing how much I've been avoiding even writing here, you can imagine how well that's going.

Just all around insanity.

But at least I don't have homework (unless you count today...or my self-assigned web project...or...you know what, never mind :P )
taerowyn: (Amused)
Apparently I've somehow become a big enough dork that I'm willing to sacrifice my whole weekend for a conference on social media...and be happy with that decision.

I went 45% to learn new things, 45% for professional networking (as a a "just in case" measure re: the economy/jobs etc.) and 10% to meet new people outside of my normal sphere.

Overall it was a pretty good conference. Learned some good stuff, it sparked a few ideas, met some good folks etc.

It's funny though, throughout the conference, I kind of saw myself as a newbie to this whole social media endeavor. And when it comes to using it professionally, I totally am. But just tonight I realized, looking at my LJ, that when you get right down to it, I've been involved in social media for more than 8 years now.

taerowyn: (Default)
I don't think I've ever had a fandom die for me.

I've had shows canceled and book series end. I've just faded out of being a fan and outgrown certain series. But I've never watched/read something and felt that it not only made me unhappy on its own, but it was enough to possibly ruin enjoyment of the things that came before in that fandom.

I'll see how I feel tomorrow....but right now? So not a happy camper.
taerowyn: (Attitude)
Feeling some Churchill today: Americans can always be trusted to do the right thing, once all other possibilities have been exhausted.
taerowyn: (AnyaBook)
You know, I try to like PETA, I really do. While I don't agree with their views 100%, I still find those opinions admirable and feel that I could like the organization.

Then they pull shit like this.

And then I want to order some veal with a side of foie gras and have it delivered to their offices.
taerowyn: (Default)
Had an unexpectedly fangirl-ish reaction tonight. Actually really surprised me. Especially considering the folks I've met in the past and *not* had this kind of reaction to...and these were people most of you would know (as opposed to tonight's individual who, if I were to guess, I'd say 3 of you might know, possibly a few others).

I mean, Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchett, Joss Whedon...all people whose work I adore. All people I've seen talk and/or met/had sign books. For each of them it was a general feeling of appreciation, a pleasure at getting to see them in person, but that was about it.

Tonight I saw Chet Raymo...like I said, probably very few of you know him. He's a local physics professor that used to write the science column for the Boston Globe. He's also written several phenomenal books including my favorite, Honey from Stone.

I discovered Honey from Stone my junior year of college. It's a collection of essays that my dad recommended while I was taking an essay class taught by Roger Rosenblatt.

I absolutely fell in love with that book.

This was my kind of writing. It was this perfect blend of science and naturalism and philosophy and history and literature and just...I really can't describe how much I love/d this book.

And icing on the cake it was all set in Dingle, Ireland.

In a lot of ways, I think this book is what started to steer me away from pure science and more toward science writing.

I've read many of his others (if you were to know of him--and are from outside the Boston area--my guess is you know either The Path, Skeptics and True Believers, or The Dork of Cork, which was the basis of the movie Frankie Starlight) but Honey from Stone is the book I always turn back to.

Anyway, last night I found out Chet Raymo was giving a talk on his latest book When God is Gone, Everything is Holy. Well...I had to go to that.

The talk was good--just a discussion about the book, how it follows his 50+ year path from devout Catholicism to his current state (which he refers to as Catholic agnosticism or religious naturalism). And then there was a signing.

And that's when it happened...

I'm standing in line, with my newly purchased copy of When God is Gone, Everything is Holy and my battered copy of Honey from Stone (appropriately purchased in Dingle, Ireland) and all of a sudden I'm tearing up. I take a few deep breaths as the people ahead of me move on and then I'm there. A little shaky...but I thank him for the books and tell him that Honey from Stone is one of my favs. I tell him how to spell my name (for the inscription) and then realize I really have to get out of there or I'm going to start gushing all over the place and I don't think he's quite prepared for a total fangirl reaction like that.

On the ride home I was grinning and tearing up at the same time. And I've been on a general "glee" high the rest of the evening. Totally unexpected fangirl squee...I think I might have a bit more understanding now for those people who lose it at conventions and the like. And yet, I can't explain where it came from and definitely didn't see it coming.


taerowyn: (Default)

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