Last winter we had some of our barn renovated into a new living room. Natalie has gone crazy with the retro look in here, and we just put in the second-to-last piece, a good looking spot for the TV (I'm still nagging her to just drop the hammer on an Eames lounge...).
We had been looking for a while for a '60s hi-fi console, but she found them too big, and they're really not deep enough to fit things like computers and large receivers. My requirements were 18" for the PC to fit comfortably, for instance. At one point I told her to give up on those, and just look for dressers that matched the depth requirement, here's what she found, for $55:
For reasons that aren't entirely clear to me, I decided that Step One was to rip the pressed board back off. We still have it, and it should honestly probably go back on with appropriate holes drilled. I really don't remember what I was thinking.
Anyway, we shimmed the drawer holes so things would fit flat without taking out the drawer track. The goal was to do as little damage to this thing as possible, just in the case we want to use it as a dresser, or re-sell it or whatever later. None of those things are going to happen. Here's that interim state:
And a wider view of how it fits in the room:
To cover the holes I had suggested some cool amp grille cloth fabric, but we actually had some pretty good stuff on-hand. It also has the advantage of not having a really tight pattern, so if it's stretched more in parts, you can't tell. The grilles are then held on by cabinet magnets. So the extent of the modification of the dresser is 12 screws to hold the metal plates the magnets stick to:
I may take some black cloth and add it to the inside, just to block 100% of the LED light when all the room-lights are off, but with the lights on, you can't see anything.
Drupalgeddon is silly, but at least it gets the point across that something is wrong and you must go fix it right now. Heartbleed, Shellshock, POODLE... not so much. At least we all had a heads-up that "some horrible SSLv3 attack" was coming even if no one knew specifics.
We've had enough this year already. Who wants a do-over on 2014?
A couple of weeks ago the drive in my GoFlex home finally died. It had had some filesystem corruption earlier this year, so I pretty much knew it was coming. I replaced the drive, and started making rash decisions. All the stupid factory junk software is disabled, but the big change was that I formatted New Drive with EXT3, since they were using NTFS (on Linux) for some unholy reason that I will probably never understand.
Well, now the drive seems not to sleep, and the drive LED blinks continuously. It doesn't vary at all, so I'm not convinced it's activity related, but there's also no LSOF on the machine, so I'm a tiny bit blind. I think a lot of the issue with Old Drive was that I was writing syslog to it from all my local hardware, which prevented it from ever spinning down. I'd like to prevent that with New Drive by sending all my shit to a Raspberry Pi instead (Raspberry Pi runs extremely well off the USB port from the GoFlex, and it also does a great job of running Privoxy).
I'm looking at ps and netstat -pnat output, and don't see anything which should necessarily be slamming the drive. Meanwhile, I need to go find an ARM lsof binary I can drop on this thing.
Natalie handed me this letter from PSNH last night. I had expected it to say something to the effect of "thank you for paying for all of our kids to go to college by installing baseboard electric". It started off mentioning something about snow.
I had my moment of: "OH AND YOU GUYS CAN GO FU... hey, this is nice", and so I share it:
This week David Lowery grumpled many of the Interbutts as he published a list of 50 "undesirable" (read: "un-licensed") music lyrics sites to target for legal action by the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA). With some major exceptions (RapGenius!), many of these sites do, in fact, suck. They're undesirable from an Internet user standpoint as well what with pop-unders and malware.
The fact is, they are worried about lost revenue from the licensing fees these guys should be paying, and the fact that lyrics sites have tons of ads, and that it follows that their owners are sitting on massive piles of cash in the Caymans. So let's go sue 'em all and get that Scrooge McDuck money silo each of them has to have. Here's a better idea, why doesn't the industry run its own goddamn lyrics sites? Well hell, I bet since we live in The Future and all, you could even track how many times someone searches for a song and give Dave Lowry his quarter of a cent per 100 impressions for Euro-Trash Girl lyrics.
The claim that it's "ripping us off as artists" is unconvincing though. If someone's reading the lyrics, you must assume they're listening or have just listened to that song, which they either own or they don't (Keep going after those pirates, I can at least see the point kind of, best of luck). Very very few songs have lyrics that merit reading on their own without music surrounding them. No one is reading the lyrics to Dr. Heckyll & Mr. Jive who isn't also listening to that song right now.
The Musician as modern Shelley is in all but the most exceptional cases disingenuous at best (Fun fact: Search for Percy Shelley on Google, and the #3 hit after Wikipedia and Poets.org is poemhunter.com, one of the NMPA's targeted sites of IP thieves). Off the top of my head, I can think of four musicians whose lyrics I could just sit and read, and even that is only a handful of songs per artist. Also off the top of my head, I can think of zero musicians whose lyrics I have just sat and read as art for its own sake.
It certainly didn't take Tennyson to write Take The Skinheads Bowling.
"Industry Sues Morons, film at eleven". Fine. "Fragile snowflake genius loses livelihood when someone can search for their lyrics for /free(!)/". Well you lost me there pal.
csFlickr10 years ago ago by xrayspx. Some time ago, one of my cow orkers sent me home with some Chinese bitter melon in trade for some of our plums. Natalie fell in love with it immediately, but I can't really get past just how strong it is. I was knocking it down with hot sauce, as I do.
Yesterday I showed up and what do you know? Three more bitter melons ready for me to take home, including one /monster/ of the species which just couldn't have been natural. Fortunately I found the answer at a farm stand tonight. They had bhut jolokia (improperly "ghost chili") peppers.
This was like two titans doing battle on my tongue! I'm fine with the heat of the jolokia by now, but what I love from it is the powerful fruity, citrusy flavor that just crushes you when you put it in your mouth, before it even touches your tongue. It pretty much perfectly set off the bitter melon.
I must have eaten 1.5lb of stir fry and my mouth is very very happy with me.
Milford has a great drive-in theater, it's in the middle of a corn field and everything. It's perfect. But in the ten years we've lived here we've only gone twice, since most movies suck. I remember we saw the Johnny Depp Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, with Fantastic Four, and we saw Snakes on a Plane with Talladega Nights (which is terrible). Natalie got to see a Harry Potter movie with some of our friends while I was out of town. The problem is that most movies suck, and we have no interest in comic book movies or live action cartoon remakes, which are the only things coming out now which are worthy of a drive in. (I would go see a Spider Man or Batman movie there I guess. I'm mainly thinking of Transformers movies and Iron Man movies).
A few weeks ago we were driving by and I said to Natalie "You know what they ought to do? They ought to show movies from the '70s and '80s, those movies were awesome and people would come watch them. I'm going to write a letter dammit. We were home 6 minutes later, I forgot about the letter.
Somehow they got the message. Tonight we watched Back to the Future and Jaws! We just happened to be driving by like 1 hour before the sun was down and Natalie saw the sign and we scrambled all fighters and made the snap judgment that we had to go do this. It's always a great time, eating concession stand food and supporting a wonderful local business in an industry that needs it.
The best thing was actually all the kids watching BTTF and loving the shit out of that movie. It lacks all the modern indicators of a blockbuster. No anthropomorphic animals, no animation, no CGI, no Michael Bay. But those kids all went nuts when George McFly punched out Biff. After the movie a parent was explaining that Marty was Michael J Fox, and I felt old.
Milford Drive-In has already made the leap to digital projection which is proving to be a hurdle that threatens to put many drive ins out of business. I'm glad they've been able to make that move and will be here for years to come.
So yeah, go watch movies, they close next weekend, and because of the unique way in which their website is designed and managed, I can't tell you what those movies will be. I believe the most reliable way to find out is probably to drive by the sign and look at it. Go give 'em your money, it's always worth it.
We just got home from seeing Odysseo, and man that was one of the most beautiful looking shows I think we've ever gone to. I had heard nothing about it until I heard this WBUR story last week, and told Natalie that this was probably something we should look into. So beyond "It's horses, and acrobatics, and huge", I still knew nothing going in. The show was definitely all of those things.
As with Cirque du Soleil shows, there really are no bad places to see. Despite the size of the tent (Largest ever blah blah, biggest traveling yadda yadda ever), there are still only 2000 seats, so it still feels small and intimate. We were in theoretically the worst possible spot, 3rd row from the top, all the way to one side. You could see everything from up there, and it was all amazing and beautiful.
I could not believe the level of control they had over these horses just with voice commands, or even with no one in sight. They knew exactly where they needed to be and those horses Did Work. The "Horse People" in the audience cued us non-horse people as to what was really over-the-top cool and especially clap-worthy :-)
The integration of the ribbon performers was especially excellent and beautifully choreographed. I do maintain though, "White ribbons, Really? In a horse rink with dirt and mud and whatnot? They'll be filthy!"
Anyway, go. Go see this show, it's really pretty neat, huge, and choreographed. Get the cheapest un-obstructed view tickets you can and you'll be fine.
I know that if we'd put 10 minutes thought into it and brought my mom, she definitely would have been barking in my ear the whole time with "DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD IT IS TO MAKE A HORSE DO THAT!". A lot of that is lost on me as a Not Horse Person, but I knew when I should be amazed. I really feel kind of ashamed that we didn't think of it with her coming for a week like, tomorrow...everything just happened so fast.
And also, this is a thing I saw this week, via JWZ:
(PSA: You might know me to take lots of photos from shows, but hey, assholes, if a venue or performer explicitly says "NO photos, NO video, NO phones", don't take photos. Just enjoy the experience, and maybe /write something down afterwards/. I wish they'd bounced some of the people in the stands taking photos during this thing. As much as I think my stuff would have come out great, there is a matter of safety and annoyance of other audience members. And I'm sure someone on a trapeze must love it when they get flashed in the face by some moron with a cellphone while hanging from one foot 30' off the ground and spinning at like 80rpm or whatever)