random stuff

Tired and headachy today. Here’s a post full of random thoughts and a small amount of griping.

I like BoingBoing a lot, and a few days ago I realized one reason why (besides the general wonderfulness of the items they post): no reader comments! Therefore, no posturing know-it-alls and flame wars to irritate me. Just links that the boingboing team finds interesting, take them or leave them. Nice.

Finished Brat Farrar, by Josephine Tey, this afternoon. Marvelous book. I first read it years and years ago, when I was about Henry’s age. My sister Kathy recommended Tey to me, so every time I read a Tey novel I think of her!

Lying in bed listening to my “Benny and Fred” pandora station. Some of the songs I’ve heard this afternoon:

Artie Shaw, “These Foolish Things”
Glenn Miller, “Fools Rush In”
Benny Goodman, “I Know That You Know”
Count Basie, “Moten Swing”
Fred Astaire, “Cheek to Cheek”

I had to thumbs-down just a few drippy things. How I do love pandora.com.

Henry had a great time at Margaret’s park day today! He wanted to start up archery again so we got there early for the archery session. He, um, arched, for a solid hour and never once complained about the heat, AND said he loved it. Yay! Margaret is so awesome. She provides all the necessary equipment, careful supervision, and a bit of instruction for only $5/hour. And then Henry asked the big boys if he could join in on their RPG session, which always takes place on a big table in the shade while the younger kids play, and he had a fantastic time playing with them for two and a half hours while I read and rested and listened to Loveline on my iPod in the car. The rest of the moms sit in the shade and chat but I’d rather sit by myself in the quiet.

Travian is fun: http://travian.us/. Work on your resources first, before building or improving other things. You’ll need more wood, clay, and grain than iron at first, so focus on improving those resources.

I have a lot of photos to upload — Henry at the beach, Henry and Dan playing Starcraft, Henry shooting arrows, the beginning of a new pair of socks, but I don’t feel like dealing with them right now so you’ll have to wait.

I gave mom a computer help session today. Virtuous daughter, me. Now she knows how to download, find (!), and open a pdf. Yay mom!

I’m minding the LibriVox email while Hugh is out of town. I don’t know how he does it full-time and keeps his sanity. People sure do feel entitled to complain about any little thing that doesn’t suit them. Keep in mind that our audiobooks are entirely, 100% free, created by volunteers who pour their hearts into making recordings for anyone who wants to listen. We get complain after complaint — “I don’t like Reader X, why on earth do you let her read?” “I don’t like readers with foreign accents.” “Books written by English authors should only be read by English readers” “Books written by men should only be read by male readers” “Recording X has background noise, don’t you have any kind of quality control?” “I don’t like your catalog search page, it doesn’t work at all!” (The user was typing the author’s name into the title box. Oops!)

However — we also get some wonderfully kind and thoughtful email from listeners. A fellow thanking us for giving his 80-year-old visually-impaired dad books to listen to. Lots of people saying they can’t believe they’ve found such a great resource. Thank you, kind people, your email really helps counteract the complainers :) And of course we do want to know when files are chopped short in the middle or have permissions problems that make their tags uneditable!

What do the ants want? WHAT DO THEY WANT?????? They seem to just wander aimlessly around looking for the Ants’ Holy Grail, whatever that might be. I’m so used to picking them off of myself while I’m sleeping that it doesn’t even bother me anymore.

I like WebbAlert. It took me a little while to get used to her, um, enthusiasm, but now I like her just fine and enjoy the content!

Category: Blog, Books, Tech 9 comments »

9 Responses to “random stuff”

  1. Christine

    I’ve been watching WebbAlert, and my only complaint about the delivery is that I can’t always tell when she’s finished one story and is starting on the next. Sometimes there’s a link, sometimes she just starts talking about something else and I feel like I get left behind.

    But it definitely has potential and the content is great.

  2. Kathy

    I think there must be an ant path across the couch where I sit with my ibook. Every few minutes I’m pulling an ant off me. It’s disgusting. I don’t know what they’re after, out here in the family room. In the kitchen I put a little boric acid in sugar water for them. In theory, they’re supposed to take some back to the nest wherever it may be and share it with the queen, and that would be the end of that nest. I am not sure I made the solution weak enough for them to survive the first sip of the solution, they seem to be keeling over into it.

    I need to find and re-read Brat Farrar! I don’t remember it at all!

  3. Elizabeth

    That’s just outrageous with the Librivox emails – what’s wrong with people?? Even before I was a volunteer for LV I would never have dreamt of writing in with trivial complaints to a free volunteer-run service. I’m so sorry y’all have to deal with that.

    Thanks for the Josephine Tey recommendation – I’ll have to give that a go. I recently read her Daughter of Time and really enjoyed it.

  4. kara

    Elizabeth — Daughter of Time was, in fact, the very book Kathy recommended to me all those years ago! I plan to re-read it next. :)

    Kathy — I’ll try the Borax trick!

  5. Michelle

    HA HA HA! I can’t believe there are actually those people who take time to write a complaint to LibriVox about that sort of thing. My favorite from the list, “Books written by men should only be read by male readers.” Do we have stats, how many female vs. male volunteers there are at present? Do you think it’s about 50-50? I don’t have a good idea.

    The ants go marching one-by-one, hurrah…hurrah! Good luck with getting rid of them.

  6. Dan Parsons

    LOL @ Ant Holy Grail! I think they want our daemons!

  7. Kristin

    Travian is pretty fun, but slow to start!

  8. Lena

    I seem to recall that the ants want water. At least that is what one said to me when he called the other night.

    (;

    Good luck with that.

  9. kara

    Yeah, the ants definitely like water. But there’s no water in the bed, the laundry basket, or the medicine cabinet! We’re almost growing fond of them.

    Dan, don’t forget to get your Daemon! http://goldencompassmovie.com/. Mine is here: Zyrxy.


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