Mad Times

“To be sane in a mad time is bad for the brain, worse for the heart.” – Wendell Berry

March 31st, 2007 at 1:16 am

Lost gloves #122

Lost glove #122

This pair seemed almost like bait. Anyone want to admit to planting them?

March 31st, 2007 at 12:59 am

Missed me!

cat in box attacking foot through hole

Box from costco has little holes at the bottom perfect for attacking toes through.

March 26th, 2007 at 12:55 pm

Lost glove #121

orange glove in traffic

March 26th, 2007 at 12:53 pm

Lost glove #120

leather glove on a road stripe in a halo of sand

This is actually the other half of #117. I saw it the day after I saw that one, just a little ways down the road, almost buried in leftover road sand. When the sweepers came by a few weeks later they left it like this.

March 24th, 2007 at 1:20 am


two cats sitting in the same pose and orientation next to eachother

Can’t tell they’re siblings, can you?

March 22nd, 2007 at 2:16 am

New levels of obsessiveness

map of issaquah with numbers showing how many lost gloves I've seen in each location

I’ve put all of my lost glove photos in a set on Flickr.

This is mostly to take advantage of the integration between Flickr and Yahoo Maps. I’ve placed each glove picture on the map as close to where it was sitting as I can recall and reproduce. #27 is still sadly homeless, but all the others have been mapped.

You can see a map showing all the gloves, even the outliers

Or you can look at one showing just the ones in Issaquah.

If you click on the numbers you’ll get a little popup with scrolling thumbnails that will take you to the individual pictures. It’s pretty neat. It’s also much much easier to maintain than my old map.

updated to fix link to Issaquah zoomed map

March 21st, 2007 at 9:58 pm

The Sharing Knife: Beguilement by Lois McMaster Bujold

cute girl with a bone knife hanging from a cord around her neck. fireflies all around herFirst volume in a new fantasy series from Bujold. The setting is an agrarian society of Farmers who are protected from some scary nasty evil creatures by a parallel society of patrolling gypsy-like Lakewalkers.

We first meet Fawn, a smart if ignorant Farmer girl with an insatiable curiosity who has run away from home we know not why. Next appears Dag, an experienced older Lakewalker who lost his left hand in some long-ago encounter.

Pretty much anything I say from here on is a spoiler, but the plot is so transparent that the book is almost self-spoiling. Yet Bujold is so good at making you fall in love with her characters that having the story be fairly predictable just lets you relax and enjoy their company. In addition to the lovable characters she has also invented a magic system and a setting with enough backstory that I’m looking forward to seeing what she does with them in the next volume.

March 21st, 2007 at 6:21 pm

Lost gloves in poetry

Today’s Writer’s Almanac includes the poem “First Day of Spring” by Ann Hudson which starts off like this:

It’s a wild March morning in Chicago, the wind

dragging its nets through the streets.

Trawling for its usual and plentiful treasures:

crushed styrofoam cups, torn newspapers,

lost gloves, a blizzard of fast food napkins.

March 20th, 2007 at 10:33 pm

Another blood test

Alice got her third blood test last Friday and we got the results via voicemail on Saturday. To get the impact of this you have to understand that our vet has sort of a morose aspect at the best of times. Think Eeyore and you won’t be too far off. So imagine our delight when his voicemail used the words “phenomenal” and “amazing”. Our little girl is doing well. Here’s the new numbers against the last two checks:

Test 1st test
2nd test
3rd test
“normal” range
BUN > 180 80 48 10-30
Creatinine 14.8 5.3 3.2 0.3-2.1
Phosphorus > 20 10.5 3.9 3.4-8.5
Potassium 3.0 6.2 4.4 3.7-5.8

We haven’t talked to him yet, so we don’t know exactly what this means for her continued health, but it sure looks like a good trend. Based on the exam on Friday we’ve switched her fluid schedule from 100ml daily to 150ml every other day and are monitoring her response to that to see how she does. We’re at the end of the third day of that cycle so it’s a little soon to say. In any event, she’s playful and eating and drinking well. We couldn’t be more pleased.

March 19th, 2007 at 11:37 pm

A Scholar of Magics by Caroline Stevermer

man and woman in edwardian dress examine an orreryPublished in 2006, this is a sequel to Stevermer’s A College of Magics from way back in 1994. But rather than following Faris Nalaneen or Greenlaw academy after the events of College, Scholar tells a story about a different school of magic, the British Glasscastle University. The stories are linked by the inclusion of Jane Brailsford, Faris’s friend from the first book.

This tale is mostly told through the eyes of Samuel Lambert, an American who has been brought to Glasscastle because of his exceptional facility with firearms. He is fascinated with the college and makes friends with a peculiar faculty member, Nicholas Fell. Jane is at the college on a mission from Faris who became the magical Warden of the North in College, and when her path crosses with Samuel’s, sparks begin to fly.

I really liked the first book, and this volume is a most worthy successor. The Edwardian setting is intriguingly different from the real period. Someone more familiar with history could probably pinpoint where history in this world diverged from that of our own. One would think that the presence of widely accepted functioning magic would cause more widespread divergence than is evident, but that’s not a very sporting criticism. Jane and Samuel are charming and realistic characters and their relationship grows and changes in a most satisfying fashion.

I just hope we don’t have to wait another 12 years for the next book!

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