memnus: Cartoon kitten after being sprayed with water (Angry kitten (QoW))
  • I just filled up this box, then turned off NoScript which promptly reloaded the page. It may have also been preventing the page from saving drafts.
  • As far as the State of Washington is concerned, I'm fully qualified to ride a motorcycle! On a whim, Frances and I took the (state-subsidized) Basic Rider Safety Course, the one that assumes no experience on anything heavier than a bicycle. Despite the rain, and despite my dropping the bike just before the actual test (oooooooops) we both passed! Now I keep looking at Craigslist to drool over bikes that I'd be too terrified to ride. No way in hell will my first bike be something I'll feel guilty about putting a few dings in.
  • After having it pointed out that my lunches were a bit skimpy, I've added "eat enough food at all costs" to the self-care list. So far the only difference I've noticed is not getting hungry at 4:30 every day, which is probably actually a pretty big step. It does lead to unfortunate things like last night's Cheese Bomb Lasagna, but at this point (especially coming into the winter) that beats the alternative.
  • I kinda want a script that picks one of my blog tags and throws it at me as a prompt. It could lead to some interesting things.
  • I started knitting a hooded scarf, and eight rows in decided it was too boring. So I'm learning cables on the fly. And buttonholes. I keep doing projects like this, and the only thing I've actually learned is not to do them on a deadline. Those damn curtains...
  • How is trolling not considered a sociopathic act? (And how does the Firefox spell check not recognize "sociopathic"?) It is literally hurting someone -- as many people as possible -- for your own amusement, because they're funny when they're hurt. Yes, offense and anger are pain responses. When did this become okay? Is it just never framed in that context?


memnus: Pink cat face jumping out of a toaster, animated (Toast! Animated! (S*P))
Turns out there's a clause in the lease at Madhouse-At-Camelot that specifically forbids running any sort of business from this address, including those businesses that are specifically allowed in residential zones. Oh well. I'm focusing more on my giant projects than anything sellable, anyway. My pants got a major field test at GeekGirlCon. Lessons learned:
  • There is absolutely no sneaking up on anyone in those. Each step sounds like kicking a bag of dimes. As ways to muffle that go, I'd like to be able to knit yarn through the links for padding, but it's slower and fiddlier than my patience can handle.
  • Fifteen pounds is a lot to hold on the hips. I don't notice for an hour or two, but the bruises didn't fade for nearly a week. Plan B is isomorphic to suspenders, but that will require further adjustments to weight-bearing elements.
  • Again I didn't notice at the time, but the rings and scales at the toes scraped much of the polish off my boots. The solution to this may actually be the same as the solution to the noise, a knit or leather pad between.
  • As it turns out, a single set of compression pants is not 100% proof against getting hairs caught. Also, not strictly warm enough. Next time, I'm doubling up the tights.
I had plenty of people asking for pictures, but I never actually got any of my own. If anyone has run into pictures of that outfit, can you pass me a link? click
memnus: Pink cat face jumping out of a toaster, animated (Toast! Animated! (S*P))
I've been working with chainmail for a couple years now, but the sheer volume of response to my latest project (scalemail pants) has inspired/encouraged me to go ahead and try to make a little money off it. Thanks to the magic of Tubes 2.0, the obvious way would appear to be to start an Etsy shop. So naturally I've pored through a bunch of their getting-started sellers' resources and am closing in on feeling ready to actually do this. But I'm hitting a few roadblocks.

Shop name (the truly important stuff). I keep drifting back to "Madhouse Metals" then balking, not wanting to limit myself from making the occasional Ridiculous Scarf or phone case. Chainmail jewelry will still be my focus, but my internal thesaurus is crashing when I try to look up synonyms for "shiny things" that start with M. Any suggestions? Winner gets a gold star (or a star of any other color(s)). This is a deceptively big deal because it'll have to go on tax paperwork and other crap that's a pain in the butt to change.

Banking. I heart my bank to death, but they don't have anything aimed toward small business, let alone micro-business. Etsy stroungly suggests keeping shop finances separate from personal finances. How seriously should I take this? Would I regret getting a free checking account aimed at personal use and then running a business out of it? Has anyone had good experiences with any banks I should look into?

Inventory. Most of my projects have been... rather large in scale. I may not be a market analyst, but I highly doubt anyone would be willing to pay me enough to want to do another pair of those pants that I won't get to keep for myself. So I have to learn to make small things. Not only that, I have to learn what counts as originality and creativity in small things. Especially when there are instructions and tutorials for hundreds of different weaves, it feels like making "just another pair of full-persian earrings" isn't actually going to be standing out in any way.

This feels like an oddly complicated and rigorous process for something where I expect to see maybe a couple hundred dollars of sales in a year. But my programmer instincts write maintainable code if I'm writing anything at all carry over to here. I may not expect a $2000 armor commission, but if one lands in front of me I want to not have to ignore it.

memnus: Me with my head back and eyes closed (Laid back)

About a month ago, I had a surreal experience at a concert in Tacoma. I had claimed some counter space out of the way, minding my own business working on scalemail. I'm well aware that scale is an attention-getter, even in crowds familiar with chainmail, but this time I was getting new questions. Was I a vendor (in particular, at Faerieworlds the following weekend)? How much did I sell pieces for? Was I interested in a place to exhibit any works? I was taken aback, and they seemed almost surprised to hear that I was making these pieces entirely for myself.

It has started me thinking, though. Chain and scale have in some ways been my first hobby to have tangible, durable results, and I'm apparently not afraid of the giant projects. So far:

  • Stainless steel shirt. Finished. So many lessons learned on this one, and I deserve I-told-you-sos from quite a few people, but it's done and I'm proud of it. I'm hoping the faire weekends this year are less blindingly hot so I can actually wear it.
  • Stainless steel coif. On hold. The obvious companion to a shirt, but looking at it now I'm not necessarily happy with the sizing. I also have a tendency to forget it actually exists.
  • Scalemail loincloth. Wearable, needs tweaking. This was my exploratory scale project, but I'm quite pleased with how it turned out and the reactions it got at Faerieworlds. I still need to figure out a way to close it that doesn't involve bolts.
  • Scalemail chaps. In progress. Using lessons learned from the loincloth, and will be a companion piece.
  • Aluminum shirt. Research phase. Bright colors and a very loose weave, good for nothing beyond getting attention.
  • "Rock Garden". Unlike the others, this is not a garden, and an extremely long term project that sprung itself on me as I was figuring out how to wrap a stone.
A quick glance at Etsy shows that the market exists (at least, that other sellers believe it does). A glance at the prices, however, tells me that I need to work faster than I currently do in order to both (a) be competetive and (b) be paying myself a sensible rate for labor. I also have some internal leaps to make to differentiate original ideas from copies, but that might well come with time.

memnus: Dragon with pigtails and glasses, saying "No sense... in a way that blows your mind?" (That makes no sense! (O&M))
I just upgraded my Dreamwidth account to permanent. I believe in them as a company, and want to see their idea of a user-focused open-source blogging platform continue. I'm also hoping that the sunk cost fallacy will get me to post more, which I suppose starts here.

As I'm sure you've all heard, we're now three weeks away from the Rapture. The date is very specific, but the time is not, so we can narrow it down to the one hour when all time zones are the same day. I have a web site idea that I wish I could have set up six months ago: The May 22nd Fund. People would note whether they think the Rapture will happen or not, and list their preferred charity and pledge any amount of money. On May 22nd, all of the money pledged would be divided among the charities chosen by the side that turns out to be right. The site could collect the pledges in advance, but more likely, would be run on the honor system: on May 22nd, each participant (or participant's estate) would receive a polite email listing a charity and how much they should donate to it.

Sadly, it's far too late to get this set up and gain the proper traction. I'm also certain it wouldn't actually get any pledges actually expecting the Rapture. Still, the reactions would certainly be telling.

memnus: Dave Davenport and Lovelace with quotes from Alice In Wonderland (We're All Mad Here (Narbonic))
The filk I delivered at Consonance 2010. It's actually an r2, with the assistance of [ profile] willskyfall and [ profile] sithjawa. Huge thanks to them, both for four extra eyes on the writing and invaluable assistance in the performing. Also, due apologies to [ profile] stealthcello for mangling a perfectly innocent respectable song that certainly never did me any wrong.

Other disclaimers: New Battlestar Galactica, spoilers through Season 2.5.

Baltar's Tango )

memnus: Pink cat face jumping out of a toaster, animated (Toast! Animated! (S*P))
So, I'm starting to work with chainmaille. I'd ordered a stainless steel sampler from The Ring Lord before Christmas, but when I went to my parents' house my mom had chain jewelery as the presents of the year. I stole some of her rings to play around with a few different weaves, then when my steel finally arrived at home I started working with larger pieces.

And kept going. I had a bracelet loose enough to slip on and off.

And then realized I was making a sleeve.

I tried to deny, and keep going while I denied it on the theory that my motivation wouldn't hold if I did. But that's a stupid plan. So.

I'm making a chainmaille shirt. I still can't get clear on hauberk, byrnie, haubergine, or any of the other words the recreationists use, and I'm not going for any sort of accuracy, so a thing that covers my chest is a shirt. I'm half making up the details of the pattern as I go along, using two different sizes of rings for size management and subtle decorations. If nothing else, between this and climbing, I'll have an awesome grip.

I'm keeping track of my progress - documenting my work, even - on Wave, if anyone is interested in future updates. If so, let me know - I've also got more than enough invites.

memnus: Pink cat face jumping out of a toaster, animated (Toast! Animated! (S*P))
Hee, just kidding. Actually, I got the official offer yesterday, and since Qualcomm is a Serious Business I can only assume that the numbers it contains are for real. Truth be told, I've got no reason not to accept it.

[Poll #1164620]

memnus: Zombie on fire, screenshot from Half-Life 2 (I HAZ A FEVR)
I have obviously been playing too much Half-Life 2. (It's for a class! I can stop any time I want! I'll have to eventually anyway!) Even more obviously, my GIMP priveleges should be revoked after a certain hour.



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

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