Geri 2014

Destination Dreamwidth

I've ported everything prior to this post over to Dreamwidth; I'm gerisullivan there, too. This is likely to be my last post here.

While I've been posting to LJ rarely of late, my intention is to try to figure out enough of how DreamWidth works to reach and follow a similar audience there. The first step was finding a theme that I could bear to read; the default from back when Dreamwidth was in beta was typographically appalling.

I won't be cross-posting to LJ from anywhere. I have been posting and reading more on Facebook since finally relenting and joining it in August 2015.

Yep, it's LJ's new TOS. At this point, I'm not interested in having to wonder if what I write might violate Russian law, especially since I don't read the language. They've made it both too rude and too risky to stay.

I also turned off automatic payments. Since I had a paid account, technically this account is mine until May 2018. I haven't yet decided whether I'm going to delete it before then. Probably, but probably not this week or even this month. I'm looking for a Mac-friendly archiving tool; I used one successfully during a TOS scare several years ago, much my quick look yesterday only turned up a PC tool and a more-complex-than-I'm-going-to-deal-with answer for Macs.

Onward! See you on the Funway....
Santa Monkey

'Tis the season...

replyhazy works at a place that has an ugly Christmas sweater party. She has decided to go "bigger and more horrible" this year. Earlier today, she wrote: "I have a hot glue gun. Don't try to stop me. The one thing that won't be attached to this sweater is good taste."

I love her attitude and hope she posts pictures!
Geri 2014

Now on the FANAC YouTube channel...

Film #13.39 from the Transtemporal Institute for Fannish Studies: Know the Hotel Staff

Filmed in the months before MidAmeriCon, the 1976 Worldcon. Featuring Dean Gahlon, Denny Lien, Jim Young, and a kazoo orchestra best left unnamed.

Kudos to David Dyer-Bennet and to Joe Siclari and Edie Stern for getting this and other tapes from the Scott Imes Video Archive online!

Other videos recently added to the FANAC Fan History channel include Joe Haldeman singing Stan Long and other videos from MidAmeriCon, Noreascon 2 and 3, Aussiecon, the Hugo Ceremony from Suncon (Attn: kaffy_r!), and more. So far, the only two I was present at when filmed were Outworlds Live! at Corflu IV (1987) and Ted White interviewing Walt Willis at MagiCon (1992).

One event totally blew me away: Science Fiction's 50th Anniversary Family Reunion at Noreascon 3 in 1989. It was brilliantly conceived and staged by Ellen Franklin. And, hey, coffeeem you're in it! (Starting at 1:03:40.)

As is SFWA's newest Grandmaster, Jane Yolen, back when she was "one of the middle-aged dinosaurs" (30:34-33:00). Highly recommended.
Cowslips Close-up

Town of Wales Board of Selectmen meeting minutes pertaining to 5 Main Street

This post is primarily for residents of the Town of Wales who want to review past business and discussions that took place at Board of Selectmen (BOS) meetings regarding the 5 Main Street property and 5 Main Street Committee. I downloaded minutes from the Town website from August 8, 2014 through December 1, 2015 and extracted the sections pertaining to the property. Most of the boldface and other formatting did not survive the copying process. Any errors or omissions are inadvertent; the complete sets of minutes are available online. I found it interesting to read the minutes about the Old Stafford Road property sale and other BOS business from the last year and more.

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Twinzy Doctor Duck


Last Friday, even though she was out of the office, my doctor has her staff move my April 6th follow-up and physical appointment to Monday in light of the pneumonia diagnosis. I was okay with that, especially given how rotten I felt that day. The good news is that Friday turned out the worst. Saturday morning brought a surprisingly large improvement, and each day since has been modestly better.

The doctor's appointment went well. I'm clearly on the mend. She ordered a couple more lab tests, and we'll confirm that the newly-discovered thyroid nodule looks benign, as 95% of them are. She confirmed that my plan to take it easy through the end of the antibiotics is a good one even if I start feeling fabulous before Thursday morning. Right now, fabulous feels farther away than that.

I *was* pleasantly surprised to not be thoroughly wiped by the appointment...and still very grateful Elaine drove me to it. Yet I came home and napped for hours on the sofa after more yummy soup for lunch. And I'm feeling very tired; a week without CPAP is probably catching up with me. But I'm still not going to risk shoving anything remaining down into my lungs; that's the last thing I need.

The narrative that makes the most sense at this point is the one my doctor put forth: a lung infection of some sort caused the initial symptoms that landed me in the ER Sunday night. The pneumonia diagnosis made after the lateral lung x-rays was likely spot on, with the IV antibiotics getting enough of a head start on it that it didn't show on the CT scan 16+ hours later. They also did the job well enough that I started feeling oh, so much better Monday evening. My doctor said the antibiotics stay in the system 24-48 hours, which matches the timing of my getting home and suddenly feeling hit by a brick a few hours later.

I can't blame the hospital for trusting the CT results; it's a better diagnostic tool for pneumonia than the xrays, and I didn't have any of the coughing that so often accompanies the disease. Well, not until Thursday night, that is....

Geri 2014

"Do not stab any part of the body such as eyes or ears with the product..."

No shit, here I was. Collapse )

The external SSD is astonishingly, ridiculously small and light. 2.09" x 2.8" x 0.36" tall at its widest point. The 4" USB cable weighs at least twice what the drive weighs.

Reading further in the User Guide, I note are only 3 bullets under the "Keep Away from Children, Infants, and Pets" safety warning. The last one is especially worth noting. After noting that there is a choking risk due to small parts, and advising that if a child is using the product to instruct said child on how to use the product correctly (and to monitor correct usage), the final bullet states:

• Do not stab any part of the body such as eyes or ears with the product, and do not put the product in the mouth.

And on that note, I'm going to post go to bed. Without stabbing anything or anybody. Not deliberately, at least.

Geri 2014

2015 Nights Away From Home Meme

Travel bumped back up last year after bottoming out at a mere 43 nights gone in 2014). The generosity of the Corflu Fifty carriend me across the Pond for the first time since 2002. Escaping the horrors of last year's winter for 19 days in March and early April would have been splendid under any circumstances, but to spend those days with friends all over England was utterly divine. Thank you all so much.

A mad dash around the Midwest in July found me staying overnight in Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, and Michigan. I passed through ten states, stayed in eight cities, was gone for 12 nights, and drove over 3,000 miles. Eep. Fun, though. Then December found me on another road trip, this time south to Virginia, delivering 14 boxes of video tapes from the Scott Imes Video Archive to be digitized before MidAmeriCon II this summer. Once I was there, I headed further south to North Carolina for an utterly lovely working mini-vacation on North Carolina's Outer Banks. I lived in North Carolina from 1974-76 and have been wanting to visit it again ever since I moved east in 2004.

In all, I was gone from Toad Woods 66 nights, or 18% of 2015, which means I was home 82% of the year. The second digits in each number flipped compared to 2014 when I was gone 12% and home 88%. But that was the low point over the 5 years I've been keeping track. As long as I'm home at least 75% of the time, I'm happy to be traveling more.

Fourteen human visitors and one canine were here for a total of 32 nights. That was grand!

FYI, I spent a few hours in the Toronto airport in both March and April as part of my Corflu Fifty travels, but neither was an overnight stay.

2015 Overnights Away From Toad Woods Collapse )

Science-fiction Conventions Collapse )

Overnight Visitors at Toad Woods Collapse )

Hope you'll all come back soon, and often, too. It's sheer delight sharing the Zeppelin Hangar with you!

Links to past meme reports
Santa Monkey

Recipe: Egg & Mussel Salad

Teresa Nielsen Hayden and I tossed around several possibilities and came up with a recipe using the cooked mussel meat I'd found at the grocery store. It went over very well when I served it on Christmas Day.

All quantities are estimates, well, except for the number of hard-boiled eggs I used. I'm confident that the recipe is very forgiving when it comes to the amounts of the ingredients.


Egg & Mussel Salad
by Teresa Nielsen Hayden & Geri Sullivan

4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped up as if for egg salad

2.5-3 oz cooked mussel meat (unseasoned) – lightly chop mussels (halved or quartered at most; you can easily leave some whole)

About 1/3 cup homemade mayonnaise (I used Alton Brown's recipe, and also pasteurized the eggs — see below for links to both)

Penzey's Singapore seasoning blend to taste – I probably used 1.5–2 teaspoons

1-2 teaspoons capers, or to taste – lightly chopped (halved, not minced)

About 2 oz pitted black olives to taste, roughly chopped up

1 Shallot, thinly sliced and chopped

Ground pepper, to taste (I used Trader Joe's Rainbow Peppercorns)

Add Singapore Seasoning blend to mayonnaise. Stir in thoroughly.

Mix everything together using a large spoon or spatula. If time permits, refrigerate for a few hours so flavors can blend.

I served it as an appetizer along with baguette slices and cucumber slices cut thickly enough to serve as the base (about 1/8" thick). Cocktail rye and crackers would likely also work well.


Homemade Mayonnaise by Alton Brown.

(GeriNote: I double the recipe and use a KitchenAid mixer for all of the whisking.)


How to Pasteurize Eggs
Geri 2014

Spellcheck: Att'n Pamela, Att'n Karen J.

Needed: the right and proper spelling & capitalization of Hippotopher/Hippotifer/you get the idea.

I've just had the delight of watching a couple of minutes of video with Jim Young interviewing Jon Singer, Bob Vardeman, and a small hippotifer at MidAmeriCon. Jon's interviewed as the head of the Bozos, Beaners, and Boogies Union, and the entire thing is charmingly bizarre, just as it should be.

So when DD-B or someone else makes a video snippet we can show, I want to make sure we spell all of the names correctly in the titles. :-)