Wednesday, September 19, 2007

hallelujah, no more nytimes select!

Friday, September 14, 2007

don't encourage martyrdom among the tree people...

i love berkeley. they have protesters living in trees to keep them from being cut down for an athletic facility. the university built a fence around them.

this is right down the street from the international house, where i lived for the summer of 2000. i remember giggling at the fault-line crack in the football stadium. i can imagine my then-20-year-old self finding it highly entertaining to have the tree people for neighbors. the whole argument has this element of delightful absurdity... i don't want to be a windmill fighter, really, but i enjoy finding myself among them.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

because i'm an adult...

watermelon for dinner. at nearly midnight. and it was yummy.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

madeleine l'engle is dead.

i have no idea how to do justice to her work's effect on me.

halfway through the nytimes obituary, i started tearing up. i haven't stopped. so much.

if you'd asked me any time in elementary school what my favorite book was, i would've told you a wrinkle in time. at least until i discovered a swiftly tilting planet. i read most of the children's and young adult series as soon as i could get copies.

a couple years ago, i discovered her writings for adults. more complex, more nuanced, more unabashedly autobiographical, but the same wise soul shining through the writing. i fell in love all over again. she quickly became a favorite christian author -- one who could speak from the other side of disbelief, about community and goodness.


Saturday, September 8, 2007

isa infante!

is it ridiculous and uncitizenlike to vote for someone simply because she has a completely gorgeous and alliterative name?

i was wandering around the first friday festivities this evening when someone handed me a flyer supporting isa infante for mayor. good timing; while i still don't know that i'm a long-term resident, the need to get involved with issues that are local-to-anywhere is finally dawning on me. (things like sidewalks and bike lanes and intelligent zoning laws... the places that feel more vivacious, more like real towns with living cultures, don't just happen.)

i haven't checked out the competition yet. but looking at ms. infante's webpage, the hows are more than a little murky... but the whats look fantastic.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

bookmarking my lunchtime reading so i can finish it from home later... in the midst of a discussion about recent housing development concepts, a friend sent a link to an article by orson scott card on why neighborhoods ought to be pedestrian/bicyclist-friendly and how to make them so. not to mention some nice justification for beefing up public transportation systems.

i don't usually pay any attention to local politics, but i think this is the sort of thing that could get me going. if we can collectively strike at two big american issues at once -- pollution and obesity -- why on earth aren't we doing all we can?

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

la vie en rose...

hooray for holidays. i drank coffee and read in sunshine on my back porch. i baked a potato, just because i had time. i did laundry without having to keep myself awake into the small hours of the morning. i got the dvd player on my laptop working under linux. i finally tempted myself out of pajamas and into errand-running mode by promising myself a trip to the movies later.

if you don't know much about edith piaf, go see la vie en rose before reading up. let the narrative have its way of telling things.

i remember having time to think that it was a little slow. i remember initially being a little annoyed at the out-of-sequence format. however, by the end, i wound up more emotionally entwined with this movie than i had been with any other recent film. i decided i liked the format; it's like getting to know someone, seeing a life piecemeal as the stories unfold, learning to understand the bits of parts that initially don't make sense. and marillon cotillard is amazing; i've seen her in other films, and i never would've recognized her. the style of movement, the voice, everything. and within that immersion, playing it from age 20 to a prematurely aged 47.

highly recommended, especially if you already know you'll love the soundtrack.

Monday, September 3, 2007

geek joy!

i installed ubuntu linux on my laptop.

all my computer-related geekage is about 7 years out of date, and the laptop's pretty new with not-so-plug-n-play drivers, so it's been an adventure.

as of this morning: wireless works (the biggest fight! i had to ndiswrap a winxp driver, which i couldn't find in 64-bit -- vista drivers freeze el laptop; a few other issues finally led me to install 32-bit ubuntu. who needs dual processing when the system's not being dragged under by windows anyway?), dvd player works, things are pretty. i just discovered that picasa comes in linux flavor now too. life is nifty.

sound still doesn't work, but it will just as soon as i grab a well-supported usb sound card. and lots of people with the same card are complaining, so i wouldn't be surprised to see it supported soonish.

figuring out linux again is kinda like total immersion in a foreign language. well, total immersion with access to google. i get an error, i go copy it into google, i find someone else who got the same thing, find out what "they" said to do about that, eventually the random attack commands start to make sense in contexts.

now if only it weren't so freakin' time-consuming!