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Assorted updates

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Been over a week since I posted anything here, and quite a while before that since I posted a life update.

For example, I didn't post at all about my family reunion a week and a half ago. Thanks much to my uncles for organizing it; was great to see everyone. Was also great to see Seattle friends on Sunday.

There are various anecdotes from that weekend—like the friendly and helpful TSA people summoning me back to security to pick up my wallet, which had mysteriously gotten out from the small bag inside my backpack; and various plane-delay misadventures; and my continued good luck in narrowly avoiding backscatter X-ray machines; and cute things various kids said and did; and watching dogs go through an agility training course; and perusing our family tree (the documented part of which goes back to Norway in 1680); and being introduced to E&D&E's backyard chickens; and being introduced to Bakugan collapsible toy robots by Esther; and teaching Rose the basics of poi; and playing Marvel Superheroes Chutes & Ladders; and a spectacular sunset from the plane on the way home.

But if I try to tell those stories I'll be here all night, and I really must get some sleep tonight. So, onward:

Flew home that Sunday night. (Thanks to Naomi for airport rides!) Hung out at home Monday, which was Labor Day; I had considered staying longer in Seattle, but I think my trips go better if I have a little downtime at home afterward before going back to work.

Monday evening, hung out with Sumana (who introduced me to her friend Riana), then I think did more magazine stuff after she headed back up to the City.

I had set aside the work week last week to work on infrastructure stuff that never makes it to the top of my to-do list; I had figured that, as a holiday week, it was likely to be quiet. So I was surprised when it turned out there were three APIs launching that I was involved in documenting. But I still ended up with a day or two at the end of the week to work on the infrastructure stuff, so it was a fairly productive week.

Kam returned from three-plus weeks away at Burning Man on Thursday; good to see her.

(During my Seattle sojourn, two different people asked me what Burning Man was, so if anyone doesn't know about it, follow that link for more info.)

This past weekend was mostly pretty good (Kam and I caught up on Dr. Who, and I talked with Pam about genealogy software, and went for a walk with Jessie and the twins, who regaled me with tales of Minecraft), but things kind of fell apart on Sunday. Ended up sleeping poorly and briefly Sunday night. Then more distressing stuff happened on Monday, though at this point I can't even remember what it was. Tuesday morning I woke up, after too little sleep, from a nightmare about being kidnapped. Tuesday evening, Kam and I went and soaked in a hot tub, but I was too tense to really enjoy it for most of the time we were there. I did calm down and relax some eventually, but then was repeatedly thwarted in minor ways when I went to get some groceries. Watching an episode of Lost and eating some cherries improved the evening, but I ended up getting even less sleep last night than the previous couple of nights.

Today at work I kept drifting off. Napping wasn't an option, so I had some caffeine (which I rarely do, though this was the second time this week), but it didn't help. I did finally finish one important piece of infrastructure, though.

This evening, went to dinner with a bunch of folks at La Fiesta, a restaurant that I'd been told had closed years ago; glad it's still around. Then more Lost with Kam (we're midway through season 3, and I'm losing confidence that the writers have any idea what they're doing on the macro level, but I'm still mostly enjoying, and usually being surprised by, the individual episodes) (no spoilers, please), and now I'm writing up a quick blog entry before I can't keep my eyes open any longer.

Oh, and somewhere in there over the past few days I finished two big long-awaited projects outside of work: I finally finished sending all of SH's 2011 fiction to various Year's Best editors, and I finally ordered some furniture.

I'll probably post in more detail about the furniture at some point, but the short version is that I ordered some tables from Vermont Woods Studios, which Sarah L had recommended (and they've been wonderful to interact with so far—very friendly and helpful); in particular, I ordered the French Country Dining Table in cherry, with a few modifications to suit my tastes. Very pleased, though a little impatient over the fact that it may be up to about four months before the tables reach me.

I'll try and use the time to decide on other furniture. Beds and dressers and nightstands and a desk, and all sorts of closet stuff, and bookcases and maybe a library ladder. Many things to be obtained, many many decisions to be made. But at least I'm done with the decisions about the tables; a good first step.

I hope at some point to post in more detail about recent reading, but a quick summary for now:

  • Finished reading Pale Fire (my first Nabokov) about a month ago; good stuff. Lots more to say about this, but not now.
  • Finished reading A Song for Arbonne (my second Kay) maybe two weeks ago or so; also good stuff.
  • Finished reading Grand Sophy (my first Heyer); delightful and funny, marred only by a bit of anti-Semitism in the middle and a slow opening; thanks much to all who recommended it.
  • Started in again on Mary Ann in Autumn (my eighth Maupin, which is to say it's the latest Tales of the City book), which I had put on hold a month or so ago, and quickly realized that the characters I had thought were new were actually from the preceding book, Michael Tolliver Lives. Really needed some comfort reading at that particular juncture, so pulled out that preceding book and re-skimmed it, and liked it all over again. Good stuff. The newer book isn't quite as good so far, but there's still plenty to like (I'm about halfway through). It occurred to me recently that Tales of the City is in some ways kind of like a San Francisco version of Doonesbury (only in prose form, of course), but I'm not going to elaborate on that tonight.

Okay, I think that's enough for now. The various sources of stress from a couple days ago have largely dissipated (and, really, they were all really minor things; I'm just a delicate flower), but I've still got a little residual tension lying around. Hoping that sleep will help.

1 Comment

Thanks for the update! And yes, you are totally right about Maupin & Trudeau, I think I see that intuitively, but hope to eventually hear what you mean by it.

And thanks for the furniture recommendation - I think that will come in handy around these parts.


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