Is 7 months too soon to ask for my 6-month review?
Is 7 months too soon to ask for my 6-month review?
A blonde walked into a bar, and asked the bartender for a double entendre. So he gave it to her.
(And no, this isn't another post about a double entendre.)
Seems one of my cans of root beer sprang a leak in the cabinet over my desk at work this weekend. Big mess. Super way to start the week, too.
Subject: Amos has sent you a private message
...as the saying goes.
I'm starting to feel the annual late-summer angst that has plagued me since I was in elementary school. A lot of it is simply an echo of all the times the summer ended and I had to go back to school, which for a significant part of my life I absolutely hated. There's something about the occasional crisp evening in August, and the incesant yammering of back-to-school sales (starting ever-earlier, of course; I saw some in July this year) that just gives me the creeps.
Now, I haven't personally been in school since 1992, so this particular edginess is a pretty silly thing to still be suffering from. Plus, the weather can stay hot for weeks to come. But various people close to me college are academics, and my parents have been forever, so there have been plenty of opportunities for this late-summer jitteryness to be reinforced. And I've helped that along too, by allowing myself to succumb to it.
But there it is.
Have you actually watched a spider in action, once its web has caught something? It's pretty amazing.
A spider had set up a pretty elaborate web outside my window, but it didn't seem to be snagging anything; in fact the spider was in the same position at the center of the wb for so long I thought it was dead. When I saw it moving around this evening, I decided to turn my bedside lamp around so it would shine out the window, through the web, and attract some bugs for the spider.
Inside of an hour, some big honkin' bug had been snared in the outer part of the web, and the spider was working on wrapping it up in a Coccoon of Death. It spun the hapless varmint on a thread, like a pig on a spit over a fire. The spider did that for a bit, then checked out the condition of the web, and resumed its post at the center.
I kept expecting other bugs to be caught, and expected the spider would have plenty of other things to throw on the grill, but not many were drawn in. Three hours after I turned on the light, the spider had moved the quite dead (I'm pretty sure) bug toward the center of the web and was working on eating it. Or sucking it dry, or whatever.
For a while, the spider left the bug an inch or two from the center, visiting it occasionally. (Like a cheese plate?) But it had the bug at the very center, and was clearly relishing it.
Like I said. Amazing.
Like Bullet Time, but different.
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION...UPDATE 1 FOR THE AFTN
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAUNTON MA
218 PM EST SAT JAN 22 2005
...PROBABLE TOP TEN SNOWSTORM/BLIZZARD FOR PORTIONS OF SNE IS AT HAND AND WHEREEVER YOU ARE THIS EVENING AROUND 7 PM WE RECOMMEND YOU BE PREPARED TO STAY THERE THROUGH AT LEAST NOON TOMORROW...
THERE WILL BE PERIODS OF RECOVERY TONIGHT AND WE DONT KNOW EXACTLY HOW ALL THE SNOWFALL RATES WILL PAN OUT BUT IF YOU HAVE TO TRAVEL...HAVE WARM CLOTHES/FOOD AND WATER WITH YOU IN CASE AN ACCIDENT SLOWS DOWN TRAVEL.
I've been impressed and disgusted, though I suppose not really surprised (hmm...or does "impressed" imply that I am surprised?) at the inconsideration of some of my fellow humans in the wake of this recent snow storm. For instance:
This morning a suede-and-fur wearing businesswoman thought that the best way to dig her car out was to swipe the plowed snow back into the street. This, even though in many cases it was a longer throw for her to move the snow back into the street than to put it in a pile on the sidewalk-side of her car, which would have had the further advantage of ensuring that the snow wouldn't be plowed back against whatever car took her space--and then dug out again, etc. Sure enough, once she got herself out, apparently a plow came through and moved all the snow back against a car. So, instead of a usable space being cleared and left for someone else (who knows?--perhaps even the person who cleared it in the first place), someone has to move that same snow again.
So, to you, brown-suede power-trollop with a dark blue BMW 528i, I say: "You're why the rest of us dislike BMW drivers. And yes, I have pictures."
More after the jump:
...Shouldn't all you little twerps be at camp?
Edit: Apparently, at some point, I typed the phrase "Should be fuckin', instead I'm bloggin'" into the title of a new post, because Firefox suggested that as an autocompletion for the original title of this post (which started with "Shouldn't").
Well. There you have it. Whatever the circumstances where, I'm glad I rethought that.
Daniel's been busy. He's installed Moveable Type, and so I'm going to do the double-post thing for a little while: I'll post here when I've updated something in the Blogger page. I work on migrating stuff from there (and b2evo) later.
I changed a bunch of stuff around here, and things are finally shaping up:
There's a new home page. (I'm still bummed out about Bob Moog, though.)
There's a new page of old pages. (At least, the ones worth keeping around.)
I'm going to disable the Blogger page, and redirect it to this blog. (Still need to keep some of the individual entries around over there, though.)
I'll be redesigning the sidebar here, to include blogrolls and such. But not yet.
The fact that I am getting a cold, and cannot hear anything out of my left ear is only partially outweighed by the following curiosities:
The depths of my left inner ear hurt when I belch. WTF?
My car, already melifluous and burbly, sounds even deeper and more menacing. And with the top up, my aural congestion deadens some of the annoying booming resonance at various speeds the XR can create.
The heft, or degree, or severity of the "cotton in the ears" (or should I just be direct and say "phlegm in the ears"?) feeling changes based on how I tilt my head. That's probably the weirdest part, though not as weird as the time I had an ear infection and it lowered all sounds by a semi-tone. Maybe that's next; I'll be sure to keep you posted.
Of course, I'm so spaced out today that I drove all the way home and got to my front door before I discovered I'd left my house keys at work. So I was pretty happy about that.
If I had soup, I'd have soup and a sandwich if I had bread....
I'm off to Phila for the weekend tomorrow. Since the weather's going to be good, I decided I'd drive instead of fly. I imagine my dad and I will take part in the quintessential suburban father/son bonding activity: car detailing, maybe a little test driving.
Mostly, though, I'm looking forward to nobody being able to hear any music during the trip but me.
Meanwhile, I'll reach into the Way Back: After a train trip to/from NYC for Thanksgiving (the mere whiff of snow in CT on Thanksgiving Day made me prefer to deal with Amtrak instead of slushy traffic without snow tires), I had my first encounter with Zipcar. It's a neat service whereby you rent cars by the hour. The fee includes all insurance and fuel, and the process is (almost) completely automated. You reserve a car near you (or not) on the web. Head to the car at the appointed time, and wave your Zipcard over the sensor and it lets you in. Turn the key and drive off.
Most people, I guess, use Zipcars for grocery shopping or ferrying family or couches around. I signed up a couple weeks ago to be able to haul stuff bigger than loaf of bread. So I rented a Jetta for a couple hours to move my airconditioner, fan and a chair to storage. There're many cars to choose from, though I guess you have to plan well in advance to get a BMW, MINI or Mazda3 on a Sunday afternoon. Everything worked really well, and it feels very much like one of the perfect examples of Web-enabled e-convenience. Or something. I have yet to talk to an actual person; and more to the point, I haven't needed to.
For my birthday, my friend Simone had gotten me a ticket to the Sixers/Celtics game on Weds. So we went to that. It was quite a game, and though the Sixers lost (which royally sucked--but when you let Kendrick Perkins get 19 rebounds, you can't really expect to win), the stars did their thing. I'd never seen Iverson play in person (he was injured the last time I got to a Celtics game and they never seem to be around when I'm in Phila), and if possible, he looks even smaller and faster in person than he does on TV.
By Thursday, my new winter tires and wheels had finally showed up and I had them installed. I'll miss the other ones for the next few months of course, but the ride is now actually quite a bit nicer. And I'll actually be able to get around in the snow. It's actually supposed to start snowing any minute now, so we'll see.
As mentioned previously, I saw North by Northwest for the umpteenth time. And Kubrick's Lolita for the first. What a great fucking (um..) movie. So understated. So fantastically shot. Amazing performances. Etc. Finally saw The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. Plenty of great Wes Anderson touches (and a great montage with Devo's "Gut Feeling" as the soundtrack), but not as gigantically good as his others. I will say it was kind of funny seeing Tony Shafrazi mutely playing an Arabian film financier (or whatever).
Central Kitchen is my current favorite restaurant (at least till I go to East Coast again). Aileen and I met up there Thursday night, and the cod-and-bacon fritters were earthshaking. Too bad there were only three of them on the plate; but Aileen let me have two of them, so I guess it's ok...
And since my dad brought some Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale up to NYC from Phila, thatt's been my favorite beer. I only brought a single bottle back with me on the train, but I tracked some down locally later in the week, and have continued to enjoy it throughly. Big, strong IPA flavor; a very reasonable (though completely dissimilar) stopgap till Rogue Chocolate Stout is available again.
I've closed the week with some freelance work today--woot--and am looking forward to a R. Kelly marathon tomorrow. With that in mind, I'll close here and try to get some sleep.
From a recent chat with Tim:
(09:43:43) Tim: Sweet! The amputee dog bailed on dog sitting
(09:43:45) Tim: woo!
(09:43:49) Tim: I'll take that goat, please
(09:47:30) Me: oh no!
(09:47:54) Me: er, can I blog that?
(09:48:11) Me: bloggorhea
(09:50:42) Tim: Know anyone who wants to ruin their nye by dogsitting?
It is a poor reason, but sometimes it works out.
Now that I have your attention....
I'm back from "The Holidays." I headed down to NYC on Xmas eve day (219 miles in 3 hours, 50 minutes, 2 stops) to hangout with my uncle, aunt and cousin for the weekend. On Xmas Eve I went to a small party in Chelsea with my friends John and Christine, and decided that rather than try to explain to a cab driver what part of Bkln I was staying in, I'd just crash on John and Christine's floor.
They have a quite-amazing air mattress, which virtually inflates itself. So, huzzah for that.
Xmas (and Monday...and Tuesday, for that matter) were super mellow. I slept late, we all drank coffee, ate food, and I was introduced to the genius of Greg the Bunny (and Warren the Ape) and Hopeless Pictures. Both are as brilliant as, and (if it's possible) even less well-known than, Arrested Development.
Came back yesterday, and mustered the energy to see Thurston Moore (in Duck) and J. Mascis (sitting in with Magik Markers) at the Abbey. Kooky, but fun. Watch out for Major Stars; they kicked ass.
Crap. The Sixers are about to lose. To a 9-and-18 team.
Happy New Year.
The NeoPhi server is moving tomorrow, so there will be some downtime around here. This means that for a few hours during the day tomorrow (probably around 10AM Eastern, which is 7AM Pacific time for our viewers on the West coast, or 1500Z everywhere else) rotorglow.com, your trusted source for....um...uh....well, anyway, it won't be available, and nor will this here blog. Also my Gallery pages will be unavailable, though I think only the Mazdaspeed people look at those.
Be prepared! Bookmark all of these right now, because during the downtime you won't be able to refer to this post to get the links.
It's been a while, so let's get started....
I was in NYC last week. It was mainly to see the mighty Hooper play at Lakeside Lounge on Saturday. Superduper fun. They rocked and the place was packed. And I recorded it and shot some pix. The recording may or may not be forthcoming, depending on what the band has to say about that, but the pix are up.
A quick word about San Loco. It's incomparable. I've never been there before 0300. At least once I've gotten there at 0510, when they've just closed, but are still inside, counting money heartlessly. Another time Brian and I have been wandering around in Brooklyn at 0400, and decided to hop a cab just to get to San Loco before the close. (That might have been the time that Carrie yelled at us when we got back to their place: "THANKS FOR CALLING!" Though that might have been another time too, which involved me asleep at a diner. Hard to say.) The point is, that San Loco is worth almost any tribulation or consequence.
Sunday was a day of rest and recovery. It was crystal clear and warm. There was brunch. Strolling. A simply fantastic LTD. A look at Brian and Carrie's new digs, with an expansive view of lower Manhattan and Lady Liberty. Dinner. A third and fourth time through the tape of the show.
Monday was Train Back To Reality Day. First I had lunch with my uncle near his new(ish) office in SoHo. Then I was whisked, in the splendor of an Acela Express, back to Boston.
Tuesday was Deal With Reality Day. Which I postponed as much as possible by sleeping somewhat late, and merely washing the car.
And today it spittled rain.
Daniel has a short explanation of the NeoPhi downtime yesterday. I didn't post anything new here because it was down (ack! catch-22!) so you didn't miss much on that score. If you sent me mail and it bounced, try sending it again.
I apologize to all the people Googling for potatoes au gratin and pictures of Bentleys, who had to get their info elsewhere yesterday.
Dogs have been on my mind a bit lately, and so I need to give a sad shoutout to my uncle's dog, a Tibetan terrier named Harrigan (or "Harry"), who was put to sleep this morning after a (fortunately) brief bout with cancer. I haven't yet found any of the pix I have of him, and I've never been able to remember his full Tibetan name, but he was a big part of the family for all of his 17 years, and I remember accompanying my parents and my uncle and aunt to pick him up at the breeders' farm in Chester County, PA, not far from the family manse.
I don't exactly recall if Harry spent his first night at said manse (I was home from college simply to meet the puppy, and I probably headed back to the city to
write a paper tear things up) or whether they continued on to NYC right away. But many is the time I was on my aunt and uncle's sofabed, peacefully sleeping the morning away, when Harry was encouraged to hop up wake me.
I hope you finally get to keep all the chew-socks everyone took away from you, Harry.
So, I've been a little slack about recent developments, and to the 5 of you who read this, I'm sorry about not blathering more frequently. But I'm off to Minneapolis for Joe and Leah's wedding this weekend and I need to hail a cab at oh-dark-thirty (uff-da!) tomorrow morning and pick up Clampants and Wife in Kendall Square, so we can catch a plane from BOS.
I reckon I'll have a variety of stories to tell when I get back on Sunday.
So....I'm back from Minneapolis. A grand time was had by all--especially me, apparently. I know I mentioned I'd tell stories, but I need to do some more fact-checking before I file a report. Suffice it to say, the ceremony was very nice, and the reception was splendid fun. The only real problem is that I became separated from my camera toward the end of the night, so I have no pix to show yet. I'm hoping the camera will make an appearance soon.
Before the wedding Kat drove me over to St. Paul to visit the house I lived in when I was 2, which was pretty neat. But the pix are on the camera, wherever that is, so....yeah.
Ah well. More soon.
EDIT, 1055, 6/12/06: Leah called me yesterday to say she was picking up the camera and the rest of my belongings, and will store them safely at Joe's parents house before bringing them back east when they return from their honeymoon. So....great f'n news.
I first learned about Sealand, the micronation a few miles off the coast of England, in an article in Wired a few years ago, just after I'd finished reading Neal Stephenson's wonderful book Cryptonomicon.
I thought Sealand was one of the coolest things I'd heard of in a long time, a weird pseudo-state caught in the confusion of international law and border technicalities. It used to be a British naval defense rig during WWII. It was abondoned in the 50s, and taken over in the 60s. After some (dubious) legal precedents establishing sovereignty were set, Britain expanded its territorial waters out past Sealand. Meaning (the theory went) that Britain would rush to the defense of Sealand if anyone came after it, since such an incursion would bring the invaders within Britain's territorial waters. Through the years there've been coup attempts, hostage-takings, fake Sealand passports, coinage, governments-in-exile...The works. How awesome is that?
Sealand was a data haven, housing servers thought to be outside the reach of various national laws (based on the de facto sovereignty Sealand had established over the years). Cryptonomicon mentions a data haven, in a micronation in the Pacific, vowing not to snoop on the data stored on or passing through its server vaults underground. I thought the coincidental timing of having read Cryptonomicon and learning about Sealand was pretty slick, and cemented for me the legend of both Wired and Stephenson (who wrote one of my favorite magazine articles ever, a 60+ page ad-free masterwork on the laying of transglobal fiber optic cables, for Wired, in the mid 90s). Point is, I loved the idea of a place whose laws specifically prevented the indiscriminate snooping on data.
The horrors of warrentless wiretaps and other crimes against the Bill of Rights were theoretical and unlikely back then (it looked like Al Gore would win in 2000...), but I remember feeling that legal protection for data security seemed like a good idea anyway.
Another thing about Sealand that resonated for me is that it's really close to a part of England in which I've spent a lot of time. It's 7 miles off Felixstowe, near Ipswich and Woodbridge, where some 2nd cousins of mine have lived for a long time, and whom my parents and I visited a lot when I was a kid. We used to go sailing on the river that connects Woodbridge to the North Sea. Etc.
Now, I haven't been back there since I learned about Sealand, but I remember standing on that (inhospitably cold) coast around there and looking out and seeing ships moving around on the horizon. Maybe I saw Sealand too on one of those trips as a 5-year-old.
Sealand caught fire on Friday, and a variety of firefighting equipment rushed to the scene, but the rig's condition is uknown. The one occupant was airlifted to Ipswich for treatment of smoke inhalation.
And the prince of Sealand vows to rebuild.
Now seems like a fine time to recount last weekend, just in time for another.. It was actionpacked, and great fun.
Bowling on Friday with (most of) the usual bowling suspects. I used my dad's vintage bowling ball. The ball itself is super; it's a Brunswick Fireball, and it hasn't been used in something like 50 years. But, it seems I'm not grown-up enough to bowl effectively with it. It weighs 16 pounds, and drilled for my dad's left-handedness. Sinister (as opposed to dextrous), if you will. Actually, bowling right-handed with it, and with the funny grip that required, seemed the least my problems. I simply didn't feel strong enough to heave it around properly. My scores started going up when I switched to a lighter (and right-handed) ball.
England-Portugal and a car-wash on Saturday. Not sure what to say about the futbol game, except that by now Portugal is gearing up for the 3rd place game. I then washed the car (for the first time since early May) at Ian's place. Great spot to wash a car; he might be opening up a shop, so keep your eyes peeled. I'll do the whole treatment this weekend, including stripping off the old wax and doing the clay bar thing, just like last July 4. Look...everyone needs a hobby.
Sat night was another trip to Bluefin in Middleton, for sushi and (Red) sox, with all 2.5 of the Lynches. We made fun of Brett Myers (in ways that I am not going to repeat on the Internet), and (later) the highschool kids who drive minivans to Richardson's to eat ice cream, hit golf balls, and pickup girls.
Sunday was the laziest day of the whole week (and weekend). I drank iced coffee, read the NYer, napped, and basked in the air conditioning and treated myself to dinner at West Side Lounge. It's good to be the king.
Monday I vacuumed the car, and after some other shopping (turbinado sugar, beer...), I headed to a dog-friendly bbq, to meet up with humans Simone and Katie and others, and dogs Rocket J. and Emmett (the latter of whom is moving back to...Kansas? Missouri?). It was a super time, with lots of dog silliness, but was cut short by...
...Having a little send-off for Albert at the Publick House. Such beer! Rogue Imperial Stout on tap. A Belgian (beer) that some guy recommended. Mojo Ale. Racer 5. It was all paradise. A little more crowded than last time, but we started (and ended) later. The (un?)fortunately unused pickup line of the night was "Can you drive stick?"
Tuesday, the Fourth, was time for more bbq, this time at Casa Lynch, along with the Lofgrens, Murphys, and 1 (one) each of a Smith, O'Toole and Mosher. During a brief rain shower, the menfolk stood around on the deck, drinking beer and discussing weighty issues of the day; somewhat in the vein of a scene from King of the Hill, but funnier. THAT was cut short by...
...Jessica's 30th bday/housewarming/4th of July party, at her new manse in Cambridge. The usual bowling/pool-shooting/wine-on-self-spilling/Champagne-swilling suspects were there (along with Misy, the latest cool Dog Owned By Someone Else I've Had The Pleasure Of Meeting), and eventually we (all) sat on the porch watching Prospect Street hum with pre-fireworks excitement, smoking, and telling jokes. As the fireworks rolled around, we lay about in the park along Broadway (between Prospect and Norfolk, if you must know) and saw maybe a half or 2/3 of the fireworks being lit off from down on the river. The rest were hidden behind a building, which was a problem that was starting to afflict that neighborhood when I ived over there a few years ago. Not a bad display, and certainly worth not trekking down to the Mass Ave bridge, and it seemed a fitting symbolic end to the joys of a 4 (!) day weekend. Sure, my Chucks ended up getting quadruple-knotted, which made for some drama when I got home, but...quite a night.
And now, RL Burnside, a mint julep, and the impending sweet, sweet toil of a day of car detailing are lulling me to sleep. The next stage of random rants will have to wait.
So, here's some of what was going down this last week.
I waxed the car yesterday. And it looks awesome, according to both some meathead in gold chains and a SUV, and a couple of 10 year-old-girls. But wouldn't you rather hear about something else?
Tomorrow, Albert's moving to NYC for grad school, about which I will probably always be jealous. At least until I do it too. But he had some AV hardware that he preferred to give away instead of sell on Craig's List. So I'm the new owner of a mammoth Sony TV, and a ReplayTV DVR, as well as a swank portable bbq and a new (to me) MiniDisc recorder.
Oh. And about 150 pieces of vinyl, collected and spun by DJ Albert Dang himself. Hottt Traxx. He offered me a chance to buy his turntables and PA and mixer and coffin...and...and...but I couldn't justify space:usage-frequency ratio, even at the crazy-low price he was asking. So I just stole his wax.
Now, the acquisition of the TV is kind of bittersweet. Picture- and sound-quality-wise, it's a huge improvement from my beloved (and also free, courtesy of my cross-country-moving roommate Robin a few years ago) Zenith System 3, with Computer Space Command. But that wood-grained retro-treasure was built in the late 1970s, and is modern in all respects--except for the appearance, the rounded corners of the screen (think 1950's sci-fi movie radar scope), the need for rabbit-ears, and the mono headphone jack. It has a keypad on the front, concealed behind a door. When that door is closed, the only controls or displays you can see is the green LED channel display.
In other words, it is the very embodiment of minimalism....
The Computer Space Command (we would say "remote control") is powered by a 9 volt battery. It has a "zoom" function, available only from the remote, which increases the magnification of the screen by maybe 10%. Invoking the zoom function on the Space Command results in the "clunk" of some machinery in the back of the TV, a simultaneous dimming of the lights (and probably some blown circuit breakers somewhere up in Ontario), and the unsteady wobbling of the picture as it enlarges. A satisfying pale orange light on the front panel of the console lights up, telling you the zoom function has been enabled (as if the fact that you can't see the tops of the heads of anyone on the screen wasn't enough of a clue). Actually, the orange light is meaningless, unless the door to the control panel on the set is closed. That door has a clear lens with the word "Zoom" silkscreened onto it, in action-packed, forward-leaning, future-seeking italic type. When the door is open, there's just a garishly large orange light. Actually, it's more of a lamp than a light. Bright. Awkward. Large.
In short, I love this old TV because it's more than a TV. But as a TV it's pretty bad. So I've definitely taken a step forward by getting this new one.
What to do about programming? As I have a habit of mentioning, I don't have cable TV. I did when I lived with Robin for those few months (and she had a pretty great TV that she kept for herself), and of course I reveled in the picture quality, programming choices and her TiVo. But that was all hers; it was there when I moved in. And when I moved out a few months later (taking some furniture *she* didn't want to move or sell, in addition to the System 3), I invested in a pair of rabbit ears ($2.99 from Radio Shack), a used VCR ($60) and a fairly good DVD player ($199 on closeout) and called it a day, in terms of building an "entertainment system." I've always preferred to spend my entertainment dollar on computers, music and gasoline.
But rabbit ears on a Replay and 27" TV seems pretty lame even by my standards. And I started thinking that something needed to be done. So I did a little research into what precisely one gets in return for giving up the moral high ground of not having cable TV (and specifically not being a Comcast customer). And I found that speed and The Daily Show are a pretty powerful combo.
The cable guy is coming on Tuesday morning to hook everything up.
What does this mean for you, gentle reader
s? (There's a strike tag around that funny "s".) It means that you'll no longer hear me remind people that "I'm the only person [they] know who doesn't have cable." it means you'll probably have to deal with me saying something like, "This Gilmore Girls show...are they kidding?" It means you'll probably have *me* telling you what to watch instead of the other way around.
Sounds awesome, doesn't it?
I really can't wait to have the Speed Channel (Rolex Series! World Rally Championship! Star Mazda Series! Touring Car Championship! All Sorts of Races Besides NASCAR and Formula 1! Dare I hope for.....Spec Miata??) ESPN will be useful too, of course, and it'd be sort of fun to watch some Tour de France on OLN (at least the all-accident highlight reels they put together). Of course The Daily Show will be great, and Yo! MTV Raps. (That's still on, right?) But I really feel dirty about having succumbed to the pressures and joined the masses, injecting culture through my eyeballs, one remote-click at a time.
And that's long before I get to investigating the PPV options at the upper end of the channel scale....
Later in the day on Tuesday, I'm going to get my eyes checked. Which is sure to be great, because I'll come home with my pupils all dilated, and not be able to watch Cribs, or Maury, or Xzibit....I'll only be able to take a nap. Not that that's such a bad alternative. But I'll set the Replay to grab the Star Mazda race in Montreal (which happened 2 weeks ago) showing on Speed Tuesday afternoon.
But enough about television.
Last week, for the first time in maybe 3 years, I made a batch of mint juleps. The way I do it is, of course, a bit complex. It involves an alchemical process of basting fresh mint (in this case, sourced in abundance from Lisa's garden) in a powerful syrup of fresh spring water and turbinado sugar.
By basting, I mean soaking, infusing and muddling. And being patient. Because all that infusing takes time.
So I had about 4 cups of syrup, and went in search of bourbon to cut it with. (I know that usually one cuts bourbon with a syrup of some kind, or a mixer, but this is really powerful syrup.) That found, I mixed up a couple of batches (*that* stage is kind of an exercise in unskillfulness; the way I do that part is kind of akin to taking a pour bath in whiskey), and still have 3ish cups of syrup remaining. It keeps forever, but at the rate I'm giving bottles of this mixed elixir away, not to mention enjoying it myself (with hand-cracked ice and a sprig of fresh mint as garnish), it won't be around long.
Those of you with summer birthdays now know what you're getting from me.
Most of you know I'm merely a casual Red Sox fan. I'll root for them unless they're playing my favorite
double-A team, the Phillies, but I have to rely on friends for the scoop, the skinny, the lowdown. So, with all that said, I'm pretty lucky to have gone to the Sox game tonight, and watch a slugfest end with another batch of heroics by David Ortiz. And I'm smart enough to know how lucky I am, and that some of you life-long Sox fans are probably cursing an infidel like me.
The tix came to me from a friend at work, and I was second in line. So that I got them at all was pretty lucky. The seats were pretty great--a box, above first base--so that was pretty lucky too, because they could have been standing-room or some-such. The night was perfect--warm, not humid yet--so that was a nice bonus, because it could have been rainy, or sweltering...like the games later this week. There are bigwigs up in the box, talking about Aramark and so on, and I get stung by a yellow jacket on the way up the ramp (I don't remember the last time that happened, and it sucks), but the view and a cold, fresh Heineken (*cough*) help with that. There are hot dogs and more beer.
And things go back and forth. Hits everywhere. The runs are piling up like a co-ed restaurant-league game. The Sox are on the short end of the score as a couple of rallies fizzle. And then in the bottom of the ninth, Sox down by two, with two on and one out, Papi comes up, and it's like everyone expects him to do something amazing. Every time. I've seen it on TV a bunch of times, of course (this past Saturday, most recently), and it's always pretty wild, but when you're there, and everyone's on their feet, it's extra cool. And so what does he do?
He goes deep, of course. For the second time in the game. Game over. Pandemonium.
And even though I'm purely a situational Sox fan, I'm into it too, high-fiving the guys in front, chanting MVP. Watching his post-game chat in front of the dugout. Noticing how nobody wants to leave. And I finally realize what a lot of people already know: that it's easy to get caught up in the moment at Fenway (like the Palestra), and think that heroics happen every day.
So, it's been a while, and I should work a little harder at recounting the stuff that's been going down lately. It was a big weekend, with Brian in town for a visit, a Sox game, and associated nonsense. And last week was busy too. But it's late, so this will be brief (and, to my credit, it won't have anything to do with meat cake).
No, for now, and (uselessly) in the style of one of my coworkers, I'll just wish my homegirl LC a big happy birthday today. She's rockin' it family-style down in Loosiana, on account of she just became an aunt.
And that's the jam, ladies and gents.
At work, I've been helping to build a program that grabs real(ish)-time weather data, and displays it on your cellphone with slick, attractive-yet-functional graphics. All well and good (more or less).
Interestingly, the weather has been nothing short of perfect for just under two weeks. There was rain yesterday (8/15) and there was some humidity on Monday 8/7. But other than that, since the heat broke on 8/3, it's been sunny, crisp and pleasantly cool.
This means that that the weather that this little application is displaying has been unvaryingly sunny/clear. Not the best for demos (yes, I could fake the data, but part of the testing involves feeds from external sources, so...).
And that means that I'm starting to get the sense that as long as I'm working on this app, the weather will stay perfect. Which for the time-being is ok. Not least because I'm atoning for fucking with the weather when I switched to summer tires (and made it snow) and took my hardtop off (and made it rain for 6 straight days).
But I feel like I might get a bit bored at some point. So enjoy the sun while it lasts.
And doesn't that just say it all?
Turns out that the
accidental absent-minded, pre-caffeine ingestion of a 2nd dose of anti-depressants, 18 hours early, does not result in mood elevation. Quite the opposite.
It's a little hard to know what to say about this date. The other four anniversaries haven't really affected me, because in one way or another I was wrapped up in withstanding my own kind of September attacks.
But "five" is just one of those numbers. And this time around I'm really remembering where I was, who I was with, and (frankly) who I was as this particularly despicable era of history began. None of it is very easy.
Patti Smith played a show at the Hatch Shell a few months later, and she gave some great advice, though it's damned difficult to heed: Remember who you were before 9/11.
Life's been pretty weird in Rotorland. I've been working a lot, for one thing, which always unbalances me a little. Hence (more or less) the radio-silence.
This is kind of allegorical, and kind of not, but:
I (re)connected (with) an old friend this week. I rewired the switch on the neon sign I got for Xmas in 1994. I'd been running it every evening for about 10 years when the switch broke. Since then, it's been dark, and I've moved it around my apartment, trying to keep it visible and in the way so I'd take the time to to find the right replacement switch.
Kept not happening, though. Freud, please call your office.
But last weekend, on one of my ever-more common trips to Home Depot, I finally found a switch that would work, and rewired the light. The switch doesn't fit perfectly, and I can't fit the cover plate back on over the hole. But the sign works (and hasn't caught fire), and I guess I'd forgotten how much I'd missed it. It's one of those things that always always made me happy.
Here the allegory breaks down a bit.
In other news, I'm finished with answering the telemarketers' batphone. Lesson learned. Yeah, I'm in the book, but the people who need to reach me (or by whom I want to be reached) have a different number.
"Take me off your list. If you have something to send me through the mail, I'll consider it, but I don't respond to telephone solicitations."
(With apologies and thanks to my favorite Inquirer sports columninst, Bill Lyon, for the title.)
Instead of dealing with "significant" stuff during my weekends, I've been dealing with "important" stuff. To wit:
A couple of weekends ago, I installed Veloce's boost gauge. Red, black and anodized aluminum. Settable peak LED (set at 7psi). Pix to come.
Speaking of Veloce, it turns 2
tomorrowtoday. It was built 5/12/04, I wrote the check on 9/30/04, and I drove it away on 10/2/04. After a mere 14041 miles, I am ruined for cars with fixed roofs.
Speaking of Mazdaspeed, it seems there's a car that might actually lure my father away from the WRX he's been considering for a couple years. He's awaiting the arrival of the (sublime, by all accounts) Mazdaspeed3, at least to give it a drive before he decides what to get.
Speaking of....red?, the Phillies were eliminated from the playoff chase on Saturday. They won, as they needed to, but they needed help from at least one of two other teams. And you can never count on that kind of help. Sure enough, they didn't get it. Wait till next year.
Speaking of wait till next year, the undergraduates have returned to Boston. Long since, it's true, but they're no longer traveling in packs of the same size as a month ago. Which means they're covering more territory, and are more "in the way."
Speaking of undergraduates (or, ahem, in the way), they look a lot better than they did when I was that age. There are exceptions1, of course. But, jeeze.
Speaking of hot, my apartment was without hot water for about 12 hours this morning.
So that's the news, and some of the sudden thoughts.
My fever's currently at 102°. Is that a problem?
So, I've been laid low by something since Monday night. Came home early yesterday, stayed home today, and....don't feel much better. Mostly because I've been working from home instead of sleeping. Which sucks.
Also, it was 76 degrees today; a perfect time to be fevered.
Heavy business is going down at work, at just the time I'm least able to keep the train on the tracks. Or interested in doing so.
The one thing I can hold onto is that I'm not mixing my metaphors.
Settle down. It's not what you think.
It seems I've gotten pneumonia somehow. On the one hand this is reassuring, because it means I haven't been imagining all this. On the other hand, it feels somewhat less than....robust? virile? Dunno. If I'd been on Kilimanjaro it'd be one thing, but as far as I can tell, I've merely been working (a lot, but still...) and riding the T.
Ah! The T. A rolling petri dish. In the 5 months since I stopped driving to work, I've gotten one cold and one case of pneumonia. Terrific.
Anyway, I went to the doc today, had my lungs irradiated, got a scrip (for Zithromax! CLD represent!), was on the T next to "DJ Nitetrain" (who was festooned with portable CD players, carried a bunch of record bags and smelled like the inside of a garden hose) and now I'm lying around watching all sortsa TV (though not Laguna Beach): The Pink Panther, a little bit of Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Tigers/Yankees (why can't Jim Leyland take over the Phillies?), The Out of Towners (the original, not the remake)....
Point is, I'm occupying myself, but I'd much rather driving around (the weather is amazing at the moment) or be carousing, or drinking these two chocolate stouts I bought at Cardullo's (while looking for mint tea).
I'm in PA for a long weekend of hanging out with my parents. The trip down was dreadful, and from the east side of the Tappan Zee Bridge through the northern-most 40 miles of the Garden State Parkway was stop and go. But there were a couple of gems that were worth the trip.
Back on the road Monday.
Dear Beloved, I am wife of Sacked Deputy President of South Africa, Mr. Jacob Zuma.
So, it's Monday again, and it's dreary and grey, leaving me to think about where the weekend went, and how to go about making it through to another one.
Friday was some nice yellowfin tuna at Summer Shack, followed by bowling. I ran out of money at the lanes, and the ATM was on the fritz. So I should probably thank Ian for spotting me all that beer. And I should thank Linnea for the ride home. And I should probably apologize to all sorts of people for my glib antics; such is the freedom of not having driven. I fell asleep mostly-clothed, chewing on a stick of gum, and with all the lights on. Not that you asked.
It was a blast, of course. Now, I didn't bowl terribly well (lots of splits, no strikes, no gutters). BUT! I did have an exceedingly clutch spare in the last frame of the last game, which allowed me to close a sizable gap and finish in third place by one pin. Word.
Saturday was....slow. Nice weather, but I didn't get out much. Wanted to wash the car, but, well...see above. I visited Simone and Rocky in the evening to watch some episodes of (the incomparably-great) Greg The Bunny, but that was about as much activity as I could muster.
Sunday: Tim and I holed up at the Big Dog to watch football during the afternoon. As always, the Big Dog = Big Fun. And in addition: Big Eagles win, and a big win by my fantasy football team Mild Acclaim. Alone in first place, a record of 8-2 with 3 to play. Top ranked offense. Etc.
Like I said. Big.
Other stuff: Last week's Robot Radio show is killer. Transcendant. Etc. Get the podcast on the East Village Radio site.
The new iPod shuffle is really small.
It's already Tuesday, which is good. And things have been sort of good-busy since last Monday when I prattled on about bowling. Hence the delay.
The weekend peaked early with a big ol' birthday-ish gathering for pool at Flat Top Johnny's. There are pictures, but you will have to find them for yourself. Well, except for one. This cabbage meme keeps hanging around....Heh.
So I had a super time on Friday night, and it was great to see everyone. Saturday was necessarily quiet, though I did go see Borat (excellent, but not quite as pants-wettingly funny as I'd expected). Sunday was....ok. Brunch at the Plough and Stars (good) followed by a grim afternoon of football (um...not-good).
But I unearthed some Judas Priest on my iPod, and on Thursday I'm heading to NYC for turkey.
There's always next year.
PS: for your edification:
Priest...Live! - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
So, let's do a little catching up:
NYC: trip down sucked. Time there was great. Trip back was fast and dry (but fie on the inattentive motherfucker who tapped my bumper at a stoplight with his Tundra). But, you know, it's all about being thankful, and it was splendid to see my family. My grandfather still amazes, telling a variety of stories about the old days when you had to circulate engine oil by hand or else the engine would seize, which was a bad state of affairs if you were on a motorcycle: the bike would stop suddenly, and send you flying over the handlebars. And a kooky French car which burned a quart of oil per tank of gas.
He amazes in all sorts of ways, but these were the funny stories this time around.
I'm toting a new ax. I got a new camera from my parents for my birthday, which they presented to me when we were in NYC. I'm working hard on getting the hang of it. It's actually proving tricky, but that might just be because I'm over-thinking things and treating it like a film camera. Which is easy to do, because I can use all my old Nikon glass on it, and it feels like a Nikon SLR (duh). But practice makes perfect, goodness knows. So I'll just have to keep going.
Sunday was spent recovering, washing the car and shooting some pix of that crazy pooch Rocky, as posted earlier.
And now it's back to the land of dreams. I was remembering the other day how the "ennui" category on this blog came about, when my friend Kate was telling me about post-marathon (or double-century) ennui. And I remember thinking, That's it! And added the category.
Great story, huh?
I'm going to a Christmas party on Saturday, and I've decided I'll be wearing a costume (of sorts). Now I just need to find the supplies. (And no, sadly it has nothing to do with Black Flag.)
But that's a long way off (it feels like). Saturday is so rarely "tomorrow."
Today is World AIDS Day/Day With(out) Art, something we need to think carefully about more than once a year.
So, things here are a little hard to read. Grey and purple on black. Jarring. Uglier than usual. Kind of like a world without art.
Think about it, at least today. Your regularly scheduled style sheet will return tomorrow.
I've been musing about the journey between instinct and fantasy. There's something that happens when you think about doing something even a little scary (and fantastic), and then all of a sudden it becomes impossible (and more fantastic, thereby).
And it never gets done.
If it's so easy for things to go in that one direction, it should at least be possible for them to go in the other direction. Instincts aren't supposed to be overcome so easily.
It's coming up to the weekend again. The Evens are playing on Friday. And the usual suspects will be saying farewell to Ian the Illegal Immigrant on Saturday. Somewhere along the way I need to put my winter wheels on, take my air conditioner out of the window, and move a whole bunch of 80s hip hop records to storage.
And follow through on an instinct, just for once.
Top seed in fantasy football playoffs
All the (good) memories of AI in black and red
Thoughts of spring (now that the snow tires are on)
A fire in the fireplace (now that the snow tires are on)
The gurgling and kicking of one Miles S. Lynch
Rounding your age up, instead of down
That one Fugazi/Make Up show in Raleigh in 96
Random smiles on the T
A little dog called The Rocket
A big bunch of friends I get to see occasionally, and all the rest of them too
This blog automatically catches about 850 pieces of spam a month. Happily, I never saw any of those unless I went looking for them in the spam traps.
Another 50 or so slip through and are held for me to moderate (which I do, by ignoring them). That's 50 notification messages that I have to delete from my inbox each month.
The 2 or 3 (max) legit comments each month I get are usually from the 3 of you who read this with any regularity, whose email addresses I've whitelisted, so that your comments are automatically published, and are not held for my approval. But that still means I have to deal with the 50 or so seemingly-legit comments from unlisted email addresses.
The CAPTCHA system should cut down on those. It'll force everyone to enter the code pictured in the grey box below your comment. The 'bots that are spamming me won't know what to do with that code, but the rest of you should. And if you're already whitelisted, entering the code correctly should still let your comment right on through to the other side.
Of course, CAPTCHAs are a big problem for the visually impaired. But...um...hey...
Note: If you mis-type (or omit) the code, you'll get a slightly misleading error message that says you can't post for a little while. I'll see about making that a little more accurate. For now, just back up, and reenter the code to try again.
You'd think I would have something more interesting to say after such a long break in posting. But at the moment....I don't. Soon though.
"Now, I'm just going to check for any swollen glands."
Bedside manner requires direct eye contact
Abnormally high blood pressure readings
Dry mouth, stammering, sweating
Otherwise unexplainable erections
It's been a while. A really long while. Not really sure why, though there were some holidays in there, and I took a couple of weeks off and went to PA and moved a bunch of stuff to storage and and and....
So now it's the end of January, and I'm reminding myself that a working fireplace is the shizznit; even though it's almost always too hot in my apartment, a crackling (and convenient) slug of pressed sawdust and coffee grounds with a binder of copper and other metals that burn colorfully is quite a pleasant luxury.
I don't really know what to say about the last few weeks. The Eagles run in the playoffs was nice, and even though it was pretty surprising, it's too bad it didn't go a little farther. I've been a terrible correspondent, and I owe many of you email; "many" is a funny term in this context, because only about 4 people read these musings with any regularity. But I guess I'm addressing "many of you" in the grander sense, all the while being well aware that I should stop mentioning how much email I owe people and just get down to writing some replies.
I've also been sick, off and on, necessitating antibiotics to combat a sinus infection that generated some impressively vivid green snot. (I have pictures, but I'm going to keep them to myself.) The colds that preceded and succeeded that were a nuisance, but I guess that's how winter goes.
I've been trying to get control over some of the stuff that's accumulated around me. I'm in the process of dumping a few dozen VHS tapes to DVD. I'm getting rid of some old hardware on Craig's List. I'm going to reorganize bookshelves so that everything that should have a place on a shelf will. And for that matter, I'm even thinking of moving to a bigger place. And not in NYC, either, which is the place I usually threaten to move to. No, if I do it this time, it'll be to Winchester, MA, with Joe and Leah as my through-the-wall neighbors, where I can lay out all my furniture (and thus clear out my storage unit), put a roof over Veloce, root for the Winchester HS Sachems....and double my commute. Or I might just stay near the robber barons in Cambridge for a bit longer.
Things at work have improved drastically. Nothing like asking for what you want. I'm getting out of writing FORTH (which I hate), and getting more into interaction design and product management. It's a little weird to go back to IA after so much hard core coding for 4 years, but it feels good, under the circumstances, to get back to something I'm comfortable with. The fact that it's for mobile and not the Web means I still have a shitload to learn, but that's proving fun too (as opposed to writing apps for our platform), and I'm working on some cool stuff that I'm not allowed to talk about yet.
I'm doing a lot of this work on a new Mac laptop, and after 10+ years, it's pretty great to be doing work on Macs again. (BBEdit, for chrissakes!) These new Intel laptops are pretty amazing, and though I love my (tiny) 12" PowerBook, this 15" MacBook Pro is tough to beat as far as size vs. performance is concerned. (Plus, I can grill a steak on it!) I could have done all the Java and FORTH stuff on OS X, but until last week, I didn't have quite enough CPU in a Mac I could take to work to handle that stuff. So. Yeah.
Wow. What a boring post, so far.
The new year is typically resolution time, but I haven't really made any. What's the point? I'm not going to get in shape just because it's January. I'm not going be a better listener just because the days have started getting longer. So I'm left with all the amorphous desires that have been knockng around for a long time, none of which have really changed much. However, I do have a new (if vague) thought to be more scared of actual scary stuff (like 110 mph on the Mass Pike), and less scared of other stuff that is less likely to kill me or someone else (failure, telling people what I think/feel). Heretofore those things have been a little out of whack, and I've found it a lot easier to drop the hammer in 6th gear than to wink suggestively at someone or try a new recipe. We'll see if this new approach actually gets going and/or bears fruit. Or phone numbers, or whatever. It worked at work, so that's something.
But not everything has changed. The Robots still have the best show on the Internet, for one thing.
I haven't been writing much lately; and it's not that nothing's been happening, just that I've....not been writing much lately. So on a day when I've gotten virtually nothing done, it seems weirdly incongruous to write a post about not writing posts.
I've hung out with/endured the wiener dogs for a night. With Scooter Girl's help, the hardtop came off the car (which put a stop to the new car pangs I was feeling after my dad got his new ride). We've seen movies like Vanishing Point and The Lives of Others. I've yelled at the TV. I've been to the Publick House and I've hung out with
Miles (at Publick House and elsewhere).
Speaking of new cars, I'm going to Phila this weekend to visit my parents, and aforementioned monstrous new car. Flying instead of driving, because I can't face the NJTP twice in 2 months.
And there it is. Nothing new. Nothing really happening, just continually moving, like a shark, to keep water running through the gills.
Instead of getting all narrative and descriptive about what I've been up to over the last couple months, I'm just gonna make a list. Like you, my attention span has been worn to a nub. So, in no particular order, and with a minimum of external links, here goes. If you make it to the bottom and want to discuss, post something in the comments.
I have installed a low-restriction air intake on the car. Turned out to be a bit of an ordeal, but well worth it. Faster and louder! Double-bonus.
I have been to a birthday party on a South End roofdeck.
I have lapped Lime Rock in a minute and a quarter.
I have drafted an underachieving Fantasy Football team, and added the dual millstones of high expectations and poor management around its neck.
I have fretted over past relationships and become more attuned to the staticky cosmic background radiation that has resulted from their end (some of which were with bangs, others with whimpers).
I have seen The Darjeeling Limited.
I have installed weather station hardware at work, and begun posting weather data on the internet.
I have been hopeless, then hopeful, then dubious, then anxious, then exhilarated while being dubious, then hopeful while being exhilarated, then happy, then smug, then sanguine, then anxious, then disappointed, then hopeful, then disillusioned, then resigned, the hopeful (yes, again), then resigned, and finally downtrodden about the 2007 Philadelphia Phillies and their playoff prospects and performance. Ultimately, like most years, the phrase "wait till next year" applies, though the ride was very nice while it lasted.
I have stopped, for the time being, lording the NY Mets' historic late season collapse at the hands of the Phillies over their fans.
I have seen Monotonix take out the trash at Great Scott.
I have decided this is enough self-indulgence for now.
Me too. I'll write something eventually.
I could say I've been too busy since November to write anything. And that's kind of true. I've taken a couple of trips, and am about to embark on another, longer one. But really I've been just chilling out.
I left my job in early December, when I realized a long period of dissatisfaction wasn't fixable. There's somewhat more to the story than simply that, of course, but that's what it boils down to.
Hence the chillin'. I've been slow about getting the Job Search Machine spun up to full speed, partially since I'm unsure about what I want to do with my life, and partially because I really enjoy not having a nine-to-five. So the motivation has been stronger to do "less" on that front, and "more" on all the others, rather than the other way around.
A big part of what I need to do with this break is get my life on track (or confirm that it is already on track). But that's quite a task. (New apt? Dog? What kind of job? Where? Why?)
So instead there's been the sleeping, and the eating and the housecleaning and decluttering (I even bought a shredder), and the going-to-PA, and the going-to-NYC, and (starting this weekend, because it seems I need an adventure) the driving-to-Florida-for-racing-school. Last weekend I realized that I had a unique opportunity to make use of my Skip Barber grad discount and take a (further discounted) class at Moroso Park. I'd been hoping this particular class would come to Lime Rock, but it looks like that won't happen till spring of 2009 at the earliest, after my special deal expires.
So off I go to drive MX5 Cup cars in the sun for 3 days. Whee!
I've done this kind of wandering around before, though not since my voluntary sabbatical in 1999. That was a 4+ week jaunt through VA, NC, TN, AR (no, I'm not kidding), MO, KY, WV, VA (again) and PA. That was more ambitious (though less purposeful, and I had a copilot, so maybe it doesn't count. Plus, that time, I was merely taking a break from a job I intended to return to.
Before that I have to go back to 1992, when I was truly jobless (and without prospects, even), and did a long solo swing from PA to FL and back, with lengthy stops in NC and AL. That was a bit of a long haul (in a 1986 Golf, no less--I was stylin'). It also seems like an unimaginably long time ago. Yeesh.
Other stuff continues apace. The trip to NYC was to see some friends who just had a little tyke, and some more friends who're about to. The wheel in the sky keeps on turning, I guess.
Deb got me hooked on It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Dexter and Weeds (in increasing order of brilliance). And we watched the Super Bowl last weekend with the usual suspects; we enjoyed the taut contest, even if everyone else was bummed out by the outcome. (I'll confess I was really not displeased, despite how much I hate my NFC East rivals, but I do hope I was gracious about all of it.) And now baseball is on the horizon.
So. There it is. I'm busy, but not. Regardless, I'm filling the time with the simple yet important things.
If the thunder and lightning (!) that that's happening as I type this doesn't portend the end of the world (or, I suppose, even if it does): The road is calling.
I saw Stop Making Sense (for the umpteenth time) at the Brattle tonight. All the art school kids thought it was...hilarious. I mean, they were laughing at pretty much everything. It's a great movie, but I never considered it funny.
Also: if you're going to get up to go to the can 4 times during a movie, why not just stay home and watch it?
I'm overdue on writing about the rest of my Florida/racing school vision quest experience, but I wanted to write a quick summary of a talk Deb and I went to on Tuesday afternoon, discussing the role of declining biodiversity in increased rates of infectious disease in humans. Dr. Richard Ostfeld of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in NY, showed that in the case of Lyme disease (caused by Borrelia burgdorferi), the most efficient reservoir host (white footed mouse) happens to be one that tolerates the fragmentation of its habitat and close proximity of humans better than its competitors and predators (foxes, deer, possums, squirrels).
So as forested plots become smaller (due to encroaching development), larger animals, which such favorable hosts for Borrelia disappear in favor of mice, which actually thrive (rather than merely survive) in such circumstances. That means nymphal and adult deer ticks are more likely to feed on an infected host, which in turn makes any given tick more likely to become a carrier, and thus any given deer tick bite of a human is more likely to infect us with Lyme disease. Yikes.
Really fascinating and well-presented (though Deb correctly pointed out that the tone had been brought wayyyy down for the non- and pseudo-scientists in the crowd).
And it's a whole new reason to be mad about the loss of fox habitat.
This is Grady James O'Keefe, born on 3/18 to my dear friends Brian and Carrie. I was able to see them on their last evening of pre-child freedom when I was in NYC a couple weeks ago.
As in, soon I will be blowing up or fixing this blog. It needs a redesign before I get back to updating it. So I'll be doing that soon. Probably.
I keep saying that, but I think I mean it this time.