Tag Archives: Weather

Are you a hoopy frood, like me?

Towel Day Self Portait

If so, you better have your towel with you today! As today, is Towel Day.

For those not familiar, Douglas Adams was one of the funniest writers of our time. He wrote a wonderful series of radio plays which were converted in a a series of books and a TV show and later into a really awful movie. This was The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. In this, Mr. Adams wrote:

A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitch hiker can have. Partly it has great practical
value – you can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a mini raft down the slow heavy river Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or to avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (a mindboggingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can’t see it, it can’t see you – daft as a bush, but very ravenous); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.

More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitch hiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have “lost”. What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is is clearly a man to be reckoned with.

After Mr. Adams’s death some lunatics decided to create Towel Day as a tribute to his genius. I only heard about it this year (about a week ago to be more precise) and decided to join in on the fun. And the fact that I’m telecommuting to work today had absolutely nothing to do with that decision. *grin*

Real Life Recap

I’ve not been posting anything for a while because… Well, I just have not felt like it which is not to say I haven’t had anything to talk about. Today, I decided to update the world at large about what I have been upto in my little slice of it.

  • We survived the tornados and hail that hit our area a week ago. Our apartment and cars were not even get damaged by the storm. Below are a few links to some of the stores online about what happened.
  • Last weekend, we replaced Ariesna‘s car (1992 Ford Escort, aka Ghost) with a 2002 Volkswagen Golf (aka Grace, aka Gracie). The really odd part about getting the new car? Even though it’s a replacement for Ghost; Ariesna has been letting me drive it the most. Apparently, this is at least partly due to the amount door dings her old car suffered through in her office’s parking lot but it still seems strange to me. Then today, the dealership called me back asking me to come in and sign a new finance contract on the car. Why? Because they found me another offer which would drop the interest rate by 1.25 points! Now that’s what I call service. So a big thanks goes out to Carousel Motors for the excellent service.
  • Last weekend, Ariesna and I looked at a house. But it was too expensive for the amount of work required to make it a home we’d want to live (namely a musty basement and some bad remodeling in the family room, dining room and kitchen). We showed up about 15 minutes early for the showing and the realtor showed up just short of 15 minutes late. He did eventually call to let us know he was running late… 5 minutes after he was supposed to be there. I was initially a bit underwhelmed by the guy. But when he finally got there and let us into the house; he let us do our own looking around without trying to pressure us and listened to the comments we had about the house to get a better idea of what we were interested in.

Sick

I’ve been under the weather for about a week now. I think I’m just about over this flu crap and will be back to posting slightly more regularly soon.

Review: Threads of Malice

Product Image: Threads of Malice

Threads of Malice
My rating: 4 out of 5.

I read Threads of Malice last week1 and wowsers! If you’ve read Ghosts in the Snow then you need to be warned before reading Threads that Ghosts is a much lighter book than Threads. The villian in Threads is far more evil than the one in Ghosts and this gives the book a much darker tone. Still with that being said, Threads is a great read.

This time around Mrs. Jones takes us out of the castle and up into The Reach. Young boys have been disappearing throughout the region for the past couple of years. When Dubric arrives in the area; he’s greeted by dozens of ghosts all at once. It’s quite the unexpected & draining experience for him. Additionally, we get to see Dien’s family and Lars learns what real family life is like.

I don’t really know what else about the story I could tell you without giving away either the mystery or the good non-mystery bits. This is a problem that I’m not the only one has. I say this because at ICON this past weekend, I attended a panel where Mrs. Jones read some passages from Threads; as well as a few pages from her third Dubric book2. One of the passages she read from Threads was included one of my favorite scenes in the book, though it turns out we visualized it somewhat differently. The scene takes place as Lars along with 2 of Dien’s daugthers are walking into town to buy some supplies3.

He hurried after them, their names hovering in his throat, but he halted after a few steps. Aly climbed onto the head of a massive stone rabbit, then slid down its back, laughing all the while. Jess leaned against it, her hand on its nose, regarding him with mirthful eyes.
“Lars, Hargrove, I’d like to introduce you to your geandfather’s rabbit.” She bowed with a flourish and grinned at him.

That’s just a fragment of the scene, but it’s the important part to me. When I first read this scene, my mind drew up a picture of a rabbit sitting up on its hindlegs wearing a waistcoat (like something you’d expect from Alice in Wonderland). The rabbit was made of a “mostly” white marble, with bits of grey scattered about here & there. The weather had caused a small crack to form near the top of the rabbit’s head, just above the left eye. Some moss had begun to grow in that crack, looking something like a scar and giving the rabbit a certain roguish appeal. From speaking to Mrs. Jones at ICON, I found out she had imagined the stone rabbit looking like a rabbit you’d see in nature. Ok, so maybe it’s not all that important but I found the scene very endearing.

I’m feeling a bit out of it; so I’m going to wrap this review up. The book was excellent but didn’t quite grip me like Ghosts had. On the other hand, the intense evil and darkness in this book was somewhat balanced out with Lars getting his first real taste of what family life is like. It’s a highly enjoyable read and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to any adult readers4. Mrs Jones, good job and I look forward to the next book!

1 Since then I’ve read through Equal Rites, Wyrd Sisters and Witches Abroad. I just didn’t feel like writing up reviews for those books.
2 Currently, the third book is titled “Valley of the Soul”.
3 Taken from pages 144-145 of Threads of Malice.
4 Given the forms that the evil takes in this book; I would not recommend this for younger readers.

Back in Business!

This morning while I was booted into windows and checking on the weather; I noticed that there was a high chance of thunderstorms. Having had enough trouble of late with my computer, I decided to shut it down while I was at work1. When I got home from work this evening, I let it try booting into Linux again as I wanted to grab the exact errors I’ve been getting so I could do some googling for a solution. Much to my surprise, it booted straight into Linux without a problem. Then I ran YOU and had it reload the latest kernel from SuSE and this time when I rebooted to complete the install; it came up perfectly. *schweet*

Of course, staying home to fix my computer means I missed another Mindbridge meeting but I doubt they’ll really miss me there as usually I just sit there silently. Hopefully next month, I’ll be able to make it to a meeting again And come to think of it, I probably won’t make it to next month’s meeting as that’s awful close to my wedding day. *shrug* You win some, you lose some.

1 Usually, it’s up & running either grabbing new, fansubbed anime via BitTorrent or transcoding video files for burning to disc.

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