memnus: Stepmania "hold" arrows and the phrase "HOLD ME". (Hold me.)
There should be more afternoons like this.

Chipotle opened its third Utah location today - this one under a mile from my house. Addict that I am, I headed down into the lunchtime crowds (and quite a crowd it was); by signing up for some spam I seem to have won myself a coupon for a free burrito. Taking my loot to go, I headed a few doors down to the new Sugarhouse Coffee location, settling in with a large hot chocolate, the latest Poly Weekly episode, and a geometry textbook, thoroughly relishing all but one of the above. That, and I may have some progress on the latest assignment (out yesterday, due tuesday, dammit). From there I headed down to the range and got nearly two hundred shots in. From here I think I'm off to bike around the park a while.

Did I mention it's warm and sunny? I can't imagine that it'll last.

ahh.

Is anyone else having issues with AIM this week? I'm using Pidgin 2.2.2, and keep getting "socker error #10060" (connection timeout) on AIM and ICQ. GTalk, LJTalk, and everything else are working fine, so it's not a firewall issue; older Gaim on my laptop is having a similar problem.

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memnus: Green-eyed person hiding under covers (Hiding in bed (QoW))
Frances was here and gone. Rocky's half done. I have a week left in this house until I have to move, and simply have not started packing (though the aforementioned Frances took away some kitchen stuff I won't need). This would be the perfect time for a power cycle and reset ... would that I could do that on command.

I'd like to take a moment to be grateful for my instinctive sense of balance, that stays with me even when drunk. As I was jumping around on stage last night, the (five-inch) heel on my left boot broke, hanging on by just a flap of pleather. I managed to hang on through the scene and the credits, but now it's got superglue splashed into it and I don't know if I can trust it.

I vaguely want something mindless to do. NWN2 would take too much thought, I'd rather not play DMC3 on the keyboard again, and I beat Half-Life. Currently working on downloading Half-Life 2, but it's huge. I do want to see what Skylark can do with it, though.

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memnus: A stylized galaxy image, with the quote "Eternity lies ahead of us - and behind. Have you drunk your fill?" (Default)
Whoa, has it been two weeks since a post (three since an honest one)? Hi, I do still exist. I've been up to various things.

Moving )

Archery )

School and happenings there )

That book thing )

Crack of other sorts )

I imagine I've missed a few things. Oh well.

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memnus: Me with my head back and eyes closed (Laid back)
I have a much larger, much more introspective entry brewing, but you don't get that today. Today you get disconnected snippets from my life.

I have yet to get access to a computer on which I can do my Master's project - the "summer" project may well become the fall project I'll actually sign up for. Until I do, though, I spend all of my time at school in the engineering computer lab. This lab is set upstairs in what I think of as the Bunker, the submerged classroom building between the old Engineering building and the new Engineering building. The top floor of the Bunker is, in fact, nothing but computer labs: going from one end of the hall to the other, you have Exit, *NIX Lab, Windows Lab, Bathrooms. However, this being outside the normal school year, they've also (rightly) deemed summer the most sensible time to repaint said hallway. So basically, anywhere I want to go - be it outside to eat lunch, or to the bathroom - I have to dodge through the giant fans and men on stilts to get there, and then I have no choice but to track white paint in on the lab carpet.

I've also committed to moving out of my apartment, into one of four bedrooms in a house. Two of the others are currently rented to Snowbird ski instructors about my age; the fourth is as far as I know available. Let me know if you're interested in a low-ceilinged basement room in the Sugarhouse area, with laid-back twentysomethings as your housemates. For those to whom I've offered crash space should you come through the greater Salt Lake area, my couch is coming with me, so the offer is in fact still open.

... I may be reading Twisted Monk in the lab, but someone else seems to be looking at a gun catalog. At least I keep my back to the wall.

I'm also looking for suggestions for a good Livejournal client to install on Debian, preferably one as full-featured as Semagic. Tag and userpic support is a must.

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memnus: Dave Davenport and Lovelace with quotes from Alice In Wonderland (We're All Mad Here (Narbonic))
June is Pride, and oddly enough, Salt Lake City is no exception. The Latter-Day Transvestites entered a float in the parade, of course. All hell broke loose... )

In other news, I'm looking for a place to live in Sugarhouse. Though I'd prefer my own apartment, one of the cast is looking for people to fill in her house, and the offer is... enticing. I have two weeks to think about it. I need them, too, and something may still appear on Craigslist.

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memnus: Dave Davenport and Lovelace with quotes from Alice In Wonderland (We're All Mad Here (Narbonic))
Wow, where to start. I suppose there's only one reasonable place.

Katy and Cal are married. This is awesome.

Friday turned out to not be the airline day from hell after all. My trip was shaved by six hours when US Airways got me on a direct flight to Boston, once it became apparent that I would not make it to Portland in time to leave Portland. I was therefore in Boston in time for dinner - I and my gracious hosts met up with Conor and Nik(k)i to hunt for cheap food; it was, in fact, found. After much frantic phone dancing, Frances finally heard that I'd make it to Boston ahead of her, so Dan and I stayed up until we went out to the airport to get her.

Saturday, the picnic, as well as all that hanging out with people I haven't seen in far, far too long... I know I didn't gt the chance to catch anyone; I also know that I tend to squander such chances even when I do get them. But it was great to see everyone, and meet new people! This also comes with a major note-to-self to add the greater Boston area to the list of places that I should keep in mind for the future.

Sunday, a bit more (unstructured) hanging out, and the ceremony and reception. The ceremony was short and beautifully touching. The reception (and transition thereto) was well planned and orchestrated, unlike a certain previous wedding I attended, and just... fit. Guests seemed to be equally balanced between "friends" and "family", which is just as well, because within the former group there could be difficulties separating a bride's side from a groom's side. I imagine others will wax more eloquent, but the entire event couldn't have been better. That, and Benj makes an amazing MC.

(Etc.)

Today was the first day in recent memory that I managed to take a flight with everything going exactly as planned! The fact that this is noteworthy is somewhat distressing, but at this point I'll take what I can get. It is annoying, however, that one of my personal symptoms of sleep deprivation (I slept all of two hours last night) is mild nausea, and the landing in SLC was bumpier than usual. Now we actually have campaign for the first time this month, too. Weird.

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memnus: Stepmania "hold" arrows and the phrase "HOLD ME". (Hold me.)
That bizarre nervous energy is back. This time, though, I feel like I could actually use it, actually channel it into work, or into reading the n things I have to read, but none of my books have arrived yet and my professors are being slow about posting actual assignments. I can only program so much (which is actually kinda a lot, but I got in the zone on Friday and Saturday and hammered a bunch of it out) before the actual specs for the assignment are posted along with the promised architecture hints/strong suggestions.

An interesting side effect of this energy is that my writing, though perhaps not gaining any more content, becomes more flowery and I get less fastidious about removing things that may sound melodramatic, sappy, or otherwise better suited to pretentious 'zines or high-school diaries than the moderated output of a supposed adult. I've been growing increasingly unfond of words, especially for the purpose of expressing feelings - as I've grown more conscious of the connotations and implications of various turns of phrase, I realize that damn near anything I write could be more easily misconstrued and misinterpreted to say something I don't really mean. That includes this very paragraph, and this entire entry.

I went skiing, this morning, with boots that actually fit this time. The snow was better, and since I remembered to check the bindings the night before I managed to get to the slopes by 10 or so this time. (Okay, so I had to turn around twice, once for my pass, once for sunscreen.) I found a few extremely hot and near-empty cruisers - I could ski those all day, except it was cold and they were serviced by a long, slow lift - and pussyfooted my way down a couple steeps that were still a bit rocky. I turned in for lunch, then looking at the bright red stripe across my nose and cheeks, decided my sunscreen must be broken and headed home.

When I got back here my face was normal-colored again, not sunburnt after all. I feel like a pansy for skiing a grand total of under three hours before quitting, but that might be the part of me speaking that always had to drive two hours to the slopes and had a father that was utterly determined to make the most of each day. It's easier to justify to myself here, so long as I remember to take half-days whenever I get the chance. I suspect this actually has something to do with the energy, and if I can keep it up (perhaps replace it with climbing or something once it gets warmer, though that's harder to get out and do alone) through the semester I might do well for myself.

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memnus: Dave Davenport and Lovelace with quotes from Alice In Wonderland (We're All Mad Here (Narbonic))
New Years plans went as expected, and now I'm back in Utah and back to taking classes. Classes themselves look to be better than last semester - TAing will be interesting at best though. We'll see. The homeworks will be due Thursday nights, though, and the prof wants me to have office hours from 6 pm to 9 pm when they're due. This isn't just a spanner in the works, it's a spanner in the spanner that was already there. I might be able to beg out of it, but it'd be difficult.

I find it a bit disturbing that when I said I prefer to have Thurdsay nights set aside for other things, the immediate response was a laugh and "Oh, just set the VCR." It bothers me that the obvious thing to set a weekday evening aside for is a television program... and what I really do want to set it aside for isn't something I can just mention in a prof's office. So I muttered something about archery practice, but that can be rescheduled.

Ugh. Now that Frances has been sent home, it's time to buckle down - I'm wondering if I can keep a decent sleep schedule this semester. I'm not optimistic, but since I have no classes mondays (heh heh heh) I'll be trying to get skiing once a week. It'll be another incentive.

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memnus: Cartoon kitten after being sprayed with water (Angry kitten (QoW))
That sled run I mentioned? It has a jump/gap/thing after the wall for a little Air Time before petering out.

My brother had some friends (with their families) up to sled this morning. Eventually the bright idea became trains of people: as many people piled onto a line of tubes as possible. I seem to have beaten myself up pretty well.

Incident 1: Solo run, my first of the day. I've gotten turned sideways by the time I hit the jump, the tube goes out from under me, I dig in a hip then flip over, using nothing but my right shoulder to drag me to a stop. Standing up from that I was really afraid of what permanent damage it might have done, but it seemed fine pretty quick.

Incident 2: I'm the second-to-last person in a train. The person behind me is off the side of the run right at the top, and it just gets worse from there as the train folds in half and I'm hoping we're not headed for the trees. By the time we're past the wall I've curled into the fetal position, not knowing where I'm going or who's coming after me. I only get my bearings when I land full-force on my shoulders, putting a nice dent the shape of my back into the landing of the jump.

Incident 3: I'm second-to-front this time, and as we come around the wall the front flips over sideways. He's still got my feet, so I go over forward onto my face, just in time to go over the jump. I land it full on my chest, then everyone else piles on top of me. I suspect that's the main reason that my lower back is now quite angry with me.

We never did get an incident-free train. There was always at least one person who'd lose a tube going over the jump... or right at the top.

Dinner tonight is Buca's, as if I haven't eaten enough the last two days to last me all week.

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memnus: Dragon with pigtails and glasses, saying "No sense... in a way that blows your mind?" (That makes no sense! (O&M))
So what do you do with three feet of snow?

Go sledding.

Topograhpy review of my parents' house: The house is built into the side of a hill. The garage and front door are on the third floor on the north side, and my father's workshop opens on the first floor on the east side. Farther down the hill to the east is the dam that blocks up the creek and gives us the aforementioned lake.

A small herd of cousins is in town now, so the engineers (led by my brother) began a construction project. The idea is that, on an inner tube, you start up by the garage and sled down past the shop, onto the banked curve and all the way down to the dam. The banked curve is, naturally, the hardest part of this, and by the time you reach that you've dropped at least twenty vertical feet and are going decently fast.

You have to see it to know what I'm talking about. The wall is anywhere from four to six feet tall, depending on which side you're standing on, and solid snow. Pictures are... somewhere. If I get a chance I'll upload some.

Then there was the christmas eve family gathering... you all know how I feel about extended family by now. By then, about 1, it was snowing again, and still is. On the return to the house, my brother and father decided that the obvious next step was to build it up by making ice/snow bricks and stacking up the top of the wall.

We'll see how that turns out.

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memnus: Ray tracing of three bars passing through a sphere (graphics)
The two major roads connecting Castle Rock (where his office is) to the greater Denver area (where he apparently lives) were closed this morning, so my dentist was not in fact available.... never mind that I would have needed to use one of those roads. He also doesn't work fridays, or next week. So no dentist for me this year. Oops. I think I'll survive.

The wind had died down by morning, and the snow itself tapered out by 2 or so. Total damage turned out to be about three feet, but we managed to get rid of that about a foot and a half at a time. Still, there was no going anywhere, and I've come to the conclusion that this is the last time I visit here for more than a few days around Christmas. Yeah, I still know people here; no, they're not close enough (in any sense) to be worth visiting. I've got better places to be for the future.

My brother did make it down from Boulder today, eventually. Not much to say on that front. I offered Illuminati for the family to play, but we settled on dominos, and I got slaughtered.

Tomorrow, the fool is going to try to go to work. Heh.

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memnus: Green-eyed person hiding under covers (Hiding in bed (QoW))
(Day 2 was adventures at the DMV. Never mind that.)

The giant storm was supposed to move in yesterday. It didn't. After waking up from a bizarre dream... well... might as well give that one a paragraph, but well.

wtf? )

Uh, yeah. I got up from that to stare out my window at total whiteout. Extremely glad I didn't have to be anywhere, I headed to breakfast, and Dad declared the new strategy on the lake: Completely melt it, and let it refreeze from scratch. That's right, it's a writeoff for the year. Anyway, with about a foot down and no end in sight, it was a time for at least an intermediate plowing; Dad took the tractor to get the driveway as a whole, while Mom and I took the snowblowers to the area around the house and the garage. My new jacket definitely proved its worth, even though the expression "spitting into the wind" takes on a new meaning when you're using a ten-horsepower drill to do the spitting. Considering that an inch accumulated between "shoveling out to the garage to warm up the tractor" and "turning the tractor on," I suspect I'll be in for a repeat performance sometime before dark.

It's neat to watch, still, and I'm afraid I have no camera to show all of my warm-climate readers, and I don't think I could do it justice anyway.

Tomorrow afternoon, I have a dentist appointment in town. That's going to be a fun drive, isn't it?

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memnus: Dragon with pigtails and glasses, saying "No sense... in a way that blows your mind?" (That makes no sense! (O&M))
Well, flights were flights (yay under an hour in the air) and I am home. Today I was drafted into working on the lake. That's something different every year, but this year it is apparently:
  • Poke the lake with sticks.
  • Pump water from the lake onto the lake.
  • Wipe it off with a giant squeegie.
It really doesn't look like it'll be particularly good skating again this year... it hasn't been very good for several years. Oh well.

I'm on the "do not report" list for jury duty tomorrow, so sleep it is. I also already have a new toy to play with.

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memnus: Stepmania "hold" arrows and the phrase "HOLD ME". (Hold me.)
After two finals yesterday, I am finally on break. Here's the plan:

Fly to Denver on Monday (jury duty on Tuesday, dentist on Thursday, various family events)
Fly to LA on the 28th
Fly back here late on the 2nd, Frances in tow
Frances here until the 10th or so

Today is for laziness, tomorrow i may go skiing if I feel up to it. Meanwhile I've been playing Neverwinter Nights a bit recently, with a downloaded module that tries to give the roguelike experience - no plot, all combat, randomized levels. It doesn't really work particularly well, but is kinda fun regardless.

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Some things

Dec. 9th, 2006 09:41 pm
memnus: A stylized galaxy image, with the quote "Eternity lies ahead of us - and behind. Have you drunk your fill?" (Default)
I don't get it.

I'm not content, right now. It's not even the discontent that I've been fighting since June; I know what that is, from whence it comes, and that there's not a damn thing I can do about it. No, this is something very different. Somewhere within me there's a stash of unfamiliar restless energy that's sick of sitting ignored, and now begging for attention. Unfortunately its cries are not particularly coherent, and I haven't the faintest clue what I'm actually supposed to do with it.

I finished my graphics final, this afternoon. It's not perfect - it's distressingly unstable when dealing with foreign bodies, and lacking the two fancy interface options I'd considered - but it's still pretty. Once I go home, I headed out looking for ski clothes.

For those not from around here, the LDS church gets very into the Christmas decorating thing... and they're good at it, too. Apart from the several different Nativity scenes in the styles of cultural scenes, Temple Square is actually quite pleasant to trek through at night this time of year. Add to that fact that today was unseasonably warm, and a Saturday, and you get pretty thick crowds. I pushed through them, headed for the upscale-bland shopping district a few blocks west. (I know that I should have headed for local businesses instead. I did - two, on the way to school to do work earlier. Neither had a decent selection of helmets, or jackets anywhere near my price range.)

I normally balk at crowds, but apparently not tonight. As I wove my way between families, dodging small children and stepping around photo shoots, I felt nothing but a detached calm and bemusement. Even digging around in Homogeneous Sporting Goods, in a state where the War on Christmas wasn't so much fought as laughed at and the music in retail was much more than just Secular Holiday Boredom, I didn't feel my usual instinct to escape, to flee. I had the task at hand, but the rest of my consciousness was too far away to be bothered.

It still hasn't reported back, or let me know what it's been up to this entire time.

Meanwhile, those two webcomics that I was raving about however long ago continue to show me just why they're worthy of me actually owning their print compilations. I recently acquired On the Origin of PCs, and put in an order for the now-back-in-print Narbonic: Volume 2, which will complete my collections of the two... until Narbonic 4 comes out next year.

I suppose on that note I should make it plain now, and please, please, please do not take any offense at this: Now that it is That Gifting Season, I will humbly request that you do not buy me anything. My reasons for this are many, and not particularly coherent. I'm not very good at accepting gifts graciously, and even worse at giving gifts, and it's a whole section of social politics that I simply prefer to remain outside of.

For those that haven't heard, my little phone was having screen issues, so I finally went and got a new one. Unfortunately, Virgin Mobile doesn't have any tool besides The Hard Way for transferring phone numbers between phones. I copied what I believe to be the important ones, but if you feel like I ought to have yours, let me know:

[Poll #885639]

Whew.

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memnus: Me with my head back and eyes closed (Laid back)
And so ends my first trip back to the Fleming family thanksgiving in five years. Well, it's not ended entirely yet, as I'm writing this just before three in the morning, under two hours before we have to leave, but you get the idea. My sleep schedule disappeared, and I figured it'd be easier to stay up with the television for a help.

I'd forgotten how distressing having a television could be. There's basic cable here, and it spent a while constantly on, until we were all sick of those same damn commercials. Yet it stayed on. It's on even now (Back to the Future!) and I'm not pleased with the concept, but it has kept me up all night. This is the only way I could think to make my sleep schedule work, sadly, and will make tomorrow (today, by the time this is posted) and Sunday interesting, but here I am. And, now people are waking up, stuff is mostly packed, and it'll be back to the airport.

I will say, though, that (for all you xkcd fans out there) Moonraker spoilers )

And now, nearly twelve hours later, I'm unpacked, showered, caught up on comics and settled back in here. Regularly scheduled programming and all that.

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memnus: Me with my bow at full draw, with quote "Just Dynamic Tension" (Dynamic Tension)
And (belatedly) thus closes another awesome run of Rocky, marking my fifth. I'm not sure how I'd compare the Emergency Exit Productions stage show against shadowing the movie with the Latter Day Transvestites, except that this was a lot more low-stress. Yes, those of you that thought you'd go insane if this weekend lasted an hour longer, you read that right - it can be worse. Through it all, though, I had a blast, met a lot of awesome people, got my footing in a new city, and am definitely looking forward to next year's run, perhaps even the n years after that.

The run did force me to drop two of my archery days, so when I went back today my string had shrunk all to hell, and my fingers and shoulder had some strong words for me. I was also there when the local definitely-not-SCA chapter came in for their weekly shoot. The two compounders I'd been sharing the range with (a former world champion (I believe) and one of the employees had nothing but words of scorn and derision for them, and I bit my tongue from saying "I think I'd get along better with them than with you." I did try one end where I rmoved Vera's sight and stabilizer and shot that way, but there were two problems with this. One, I didn't take off the extra weight I keep on top of my riser to counterbalance the stabilizer a bit, so was hideously out of line. Two, my arrow rest is simply too small to hold an arrow on its own for any length of time, even my tiny little carbons, so I was shooting with the clicker anyway.

Now I'm busily trying to clean up the place... by which I mean I'm sitting here thinking about how much the place needs cleaning. And furniture. And cats. As it stands, Frances is arriving tomorrow and it looks like we'll be having meals (what we don't get elsewhere, anyway) on the couch, or the floor. Or in bed.

Ok, this post has been sitting here far too long, so off it goes.

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memnus: Me with my head back and eyes closed (Laid back)
The Madhouse is officially going offline for a week or so. I need a vacation, and hey look! It's time for one.

Peace, yo.

(Haven't slept since yesterday... oops.)

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KMFDM

Sep. 28th, 2006 12:33 am
memnus: Me with my bow at full draw, with quote "Just Dynamic Tension" (Dynamic Tension)
Well, that was odd.

I'd been looking at an empty evening tonight, so I accepted an offer from some Rocky people to see KMFDM in concert. For those following along at home, look up "Juke Joint Jezebel" in your Funball playlists, and you'll have an idea of just what I was expecting.

Quite the surprise for me, let me assure you. We were at the head of the line, so crushed ourselves up against the barrier by the stage. I was then greeted by Combichrist, sounding to me like nothing more than prerecorded beats, overenthusiastic drumming, and angrily screamd (uninspired) lyrics. Then KMFDM appeared, and were at least playing the interesting parts of their own music, even if the balance on the mics was not what I was expecting. Two encores later, I'd still not heard anything familiar, and tried to squeeze out ahead of the crowds.

Strangely enough, I enjoyed myself, despite fairly low personal energy and a short dizzy spell, and being crushed against a metal wall. Perhaps not an experience I'd repeat lightly, but I'm open to ideas.

Then, when I got back here, there was an extremely disconcerting hissing coming from the engine of the Sube. It would get louder and softer for no apparent reason, and a few minutes with a flashlight didn't show anything out of the ordinary. I think I'll see if it works tomorrow, and also if it still hisses, and then decide if I want to worry about it.

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memnus: Me with my head back and eyes closed (Laid back)
I ended up staying at Area 51 all the way to closing. I was wandering around feeling vaguely out-of-place for not very long when I was accosted by a small and extremely hyper woman. She obviously felt very much at home there, unlike her two friends, both as new to the place as I. I figured, hey, what the hell, and for the most part stuck with them for the rest of the night. There was sitting around on the patio (more cigarette smoke there than inside, oddly), some dancing (not much at once; by the time the dance floor got crowded the only places with enough room for my style were right under the speakers), and a whole lot of the attention-span loss that I always get in loud crowds of strangers. Eventually we traded phone numbers (why, god, why must normal people use the fucking telephone?) and left at two in the morning. I imagine the Denny's around the corner gets huge business at 2:10. The chaos of the night fuzzed a lot of memories, but some things I do recall:

- On the way in, a drag queen asked me where I acquired the boots.

- Said boots basically force all my weight to the balls of my feet. This does wonderful things for my dancing, if I'm not dancing for very long.

- Thanks to the crowd I fell in with, I was well out of my demographic. At least two women I met were younger than I, had kids at home, and were perfectly happy to be rid of said kids' scum fathers.

- The theme of the night was Uniform Fetish. One guy went so far as to construct a superhero outfit, with pink body, knee and elbow pads, a cape, and POET written across his chest: "There's no justice like poetic justice!" He was playing the part, too.

- One vendor there was selling actual law-enforcement handcuffs. By the time I stopped dithering and decided to buy some, they were gone.

- The vacuum table: Two sheets of latex with a hole for your nose, that they put you between and then suck out all the air. Passersby are then invited to touch you.

- Dancing, and trying to flirt and failing, with various of the people I'd just met.

So, all in all a very good night. Today I slept in until almost noon (on the couch... I'd washed my sheets and not put them back on), lounged around doing reading for Graphics (hardly anything I've not seen before), baked cookies (note to self, get a hand mixer dammit) and tried again to reach the local Rocky troupe. Said troupe rehearses Sunday nights, though, so if I hear back from them FMTG will hate me, a lot. Moving earlier in the day would be best for me, but I think it's no good for others.

Tomorrow, I play Cookie Fairy for the grad lounge.

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memnus: A stylized galaxy image, with the quote "Eternity lies ahead of us - and behind. Have you drunk your fill?" (Default)
Brian

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