Tag Archives: halloween

304

304: Round Little Minon

304: Round Little Minon

Halloween Weekend 2008

  • Only 93 kids this year.
  • Attended ICON 33 on Saturday.
    • Ran into several people I hadn’t seen in years, yeah!
    • Arrived after 2 of the extremely few panels of interest were already over, boo.
    • Got stuck in an AI meeting during which I missed another panel of interest, boo.
    • Went to Cath’s author reading. She read scenes from Substance of Shadows with Milo, yeah!
    • Successfully avoided the Hammer Horror Vampire Babe room party.
    • Attended the Wylde Nept concert, yeah!
  • Raked the yard on Sunday and then took delivery of a load of firewood.
    • The load was supposed to be a face cord, but I think it was a little short of that.
    • Also their version of delivery was to dump the firewood in our yard, whereas I’d been hoping they were going to stack it for me.
      • As you might well imagine my back did not care for stacking the firewood at all and I’m moving rather stiffly still.

Random Thoughts

I’ve been bad about posting anything here, so here’s a collection of random thoughts that have occurred to me since my last posting.

  • For several years I carried a PDA to keep track of appointments, jot down notes and to have important phone numbers/addresses handy. I started off with a Handspring Visor Platinum, later switched over to a Sonly Clie for a color screen and rechargeable battery. Eventually the Clie started giving me problems so I started leaving it at home more & more. Instead I carried around my “paper brain”, a 3×5 spiral bound notebook. It worked alright but pages kept getting ripped whenever people needed scrap paper. Over time it became a ragged shadow of its former self and needed replacement. A couple of weeks back I finally did replace it; this time I picked up a Moleskine or as I’ve taken to call it “my snobby paper brain”. The Moleskine was about 3 times as expensive as my old “paper brain” and I’ve read numerous articles online from devotees of these notebooks. Those articles had aroused my curiosity. I find the paper to be very smooth and pleasant to write upon, though I do need to find a pen/ink to use which doesn’t bleed through so much. I’ve been writing…
    • character ideas for games I’m playing
    • dreams I’ve had
    • things I need to get done
    • grocery lists

    … and little things like that. It’s stuff which if I ever developed the more interesting bits could end up here, but for the most part is too mundane to make me want to post it.

  • I used a print out of a Windows BSOD and a black robe I still have from several years ago to be the Blue Screen of Death for my office’s Halloween festivities. The costume netted me third place and a $10 Target gift card. Whee!
  • We were down about a third in the number of kids coming by the house last night for Halloween. Maybe the massive number of kids last year was them checking us out since it was our first year there. Or maybe something else happened, but I thought we gave out good candy and we were stocked up to give more this year. Heck, we had an entire bag left unopened after we stopped for the night. Ah well, it’ll make the office happy as I’ll bring all the candy to work to get rid of it. Don’t get me wrong, it’s candy I like (saltwater taffy to be specific) but it’s a 5lb bag and I don’t need all those calories.

Update: I forgot to mention when I someday fill up my current Moleskine, I do plan to buy another one but next time will get the grid paper version vs the ruled paper version I have now. I think the grid will be more conducive to sketching than the lines, while still having something there to keep my written words running straight across the page.

Also I meant to talk about the new light fixture I finally got installed in our upstairs hallway. When we moved into the house, there was a floresent light in the hallway. But the bulb was never plugged into the fixture as there’s no switch for it1. So we bought a simple light fixture with a built-in switch. I got the old fixture taken down but in doing so found that the screws to hold the new fixture wouldn’t fit into the electrical box in the wall. I bought a new electrical box, but when I took out the old one I got another surprise. The old box was screwed into scraps of wood to kind of clamp the box to the drywall and as soon as I had the screws out of them… the bits of wood fell down inside the wall. *insert swearing here* Putting in the new light got put off for a while… basically until I had a chat with my father-in-law. He told me what kind of electrical box to buy and the next weekend I had the light installed.

1 Technically, there is a switch at the bottom of the stairs but turning it off kills all power to the upstairs.

Halloween Recap

At work, we had a massive potluck and I definitely won’t be packing a lunch next time we have a potluck. I’m used to potlucks where most people bring desserts and you have to bring your own “meal”. Yesterday’s potluck had the expected massive table of desserts but people also brought in 2 kinds of chili, 2 kinds of stew, roast beef, potato salad, a veggie tray, crackers and cheese.

At home, we weren’t sure what to expect for trick-or-treaters as this is our first Halloween in the new house. I’d talked to a neighbor and he said to expect something like 50-80 kids. We bought 2 large bags of candy and had some Halloween toys from previous years. Naively, we thought this would be enough. And perhaps it would have been if we only got 50-80 kids, but we actually got somewhere between 100-120 kids1! Still our goodies held out until about 7:45PM and trick-or-treating officially ended at 8:00PM; so we didn’t do too badly.

Overall, the kids were polite and it was a fun evening. Especially since I was lazy and let Ariesna do all the running around to get the candy to the kids2. However there were a couple of downers during the evening; for one, there were several kids who stood on the porch looking in their bags after getting their treats asking what they’d been given. What the heck is up with that? Sure, Ariesna was tossing some toys in with the candy but it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what they were. Especially if they wait until they get home and really look over their loot. I probably wouldn’t have minded it much, but most of them doing it were the older kids who were probably borderline too old to be trick-or-treating anyway. So it was really ticking me off.

1 My wife has the exact number, but I forgot what she said it was.
2 I wasn’t entirely lazy, I spent about half the night trying to get a a fire blazing in the fireplace.

Ban This!

I just found out we’re in the middle of the ALA‘s annual Banned Book Week. So here’s a little meme….

Instructions

Copy the ALA’s The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990-2000 into your blog/journal/website/forum/whatever and then bold those books that you’ve read. If you think you’ve read a book, but you’re not sure then put those books in italics.

1. Scary Stories (Series) by Alvin Schwartz
2. Daddy’s Roommate by Michael Willhoite
3. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
4. The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier
5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
6. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
7. Harry Potter (Series) by J.K. Rowling
8. Forever by Judy Blume
9. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
10. Alice (Series) by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
11. Heather Has Two Mommies by Leslea Newman
12. My Brother Sam is Dead by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier
13. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
14. The Giver by Lois Lowry
15. It’s Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris
16. Goosebumps (Series) by R.L. Stine
17. A Day No Pigs Would Die by Robert Newton Peck
18. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
19. Sex by Madonna
20. Earth’s Children (Series) by Jean M. Auel
21. The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson
22. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
23. Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
24. Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers
25. In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak
26. The Stupids (Series) by Harry Allard
27. The Witches by Roald Dahl
28. The New Joy of Gay Sex by Charles Silverstein
29. Anastasia Krupnik (Series) by Lois Lowry
30. The Goats by Brock Cole
31. Kaffir Boy by Mark Mathabane
32. Blubber by Judy Blume
33. Killing Mr. Griffin by Lois Duncan
34. Halloween ABC by Eve Merriam
35. We All Fall Down by Robert Cormier
36. Final Exit by Derek Humphry
37. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
38. Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
39. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
40. What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Girls: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Daughters by Lynda Madaras
41. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
42. Beloved by Toni Morrison
43. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
44. The Pigman by Paul Zindel
45. Bumps in the Night by Harry Allard
46. Deenie by Judy Blume
47. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
48. Annie on my Mind by Nancy Garden
49. The Boy Who Lost His Face by Louis Sachar
50. Cross Your Fingers, Spit in Your Hat by Alvin Schwartz
51. A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein
52. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
53. Sleeping Beauty Trilogy by A.N. Roquelaure (Anne Rice)
54. Asking About Sex and Growing Up by Joanna Cole
55. Cujo by Stephen King
56. James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
57. The Anarchist Cookbook by William Powell
58. Boys and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy
59. Ordinary People by Judith Guest
60. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
61. What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Boys: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Sons by Lynda Madaras
62. Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
63. Crazy Lady by Jane Conly
64. Athletic Shorts by Chris Crutcher
65. Fade by Robert Cormier
66. Guess What? by Mem Fox
67. The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende
68. The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline Cooney
69. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
70. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
71. Native Son by Richard Wright
72. Women on Top: How Real Life Has Changed Women’s Fantasies by Nancy Friday
73. Curses, Hexes and Spells by Daniel Cohen
74. Jack by A.M. Homes
75. Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo A. Anaya
76. Where Did I Come From? by Peter Mayle
77. Carrie by Stephen King
78. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
79. On My Honor by Marion Dane Bauer
80. Arizona Kid by Ron Koertge
81. Family Secrets by Norma Klein
82. Mommy Laid An Egg by Babette Cole
83. The Dead Zone by Stephen King
84. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
85. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
86. Always Running by Luis Rodriguez
87. Private Parts by Howard Stern
88. Where’s Waldo? by Martin Hanford
89. Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene
90. Little Black Sambo by Helen Bannerman
91. Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
92. Running Loose by Chris Crutcher
93. Sex Education by Jenny Davis
94. The Drowning of Stephen Jones by Bette Greene
95. Girls and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy
96. How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell
97. View from the Cherry Tree by Willo Davis Roberts
98. The Headless Cupid by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
99. The Terrorist by Caroline Cooney
100. Jump Ship to Freedom by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier

Hmm, there’s too many on that list I’ve not read yet. Ah well, now I’ve got a list of things to look for on my next trip to CPL.

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