Saturday, November 29, 2008

History Eraser Button

Since I've fallen behind, I've gone back through and edited time stamps on old posts from this week, mostly to put them onto the day and approximate time that they were taken. I prefer to look at this less as altering events to match my view of them (a la Soviet propaganda), but rather changing the published record to more accurately reflect reality (sort of like post archaeology, if you will).

I'm going to try to get around to writing some sort of a Thanksgiving recap at some point today, too, since tomorrow is another day of travel (with the associated random pictures uploaded).

Friday, November 28, 2008

Sad pigeon

His one leg is gimpy.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving Day Filler

See this for details. I'm too tired to write things up today. :(

Omg robots!

mini or not

Monday, November 24, 2008

Busy day

I've spent today rushing around trying to get last minute things organized before leaving for Thanksgiving. I'm most of the way to having my AAS flight booked, I sorted through some job stuff (I'll mail my people tomorrow), I stared at my paper without successfully writing anything, I organized a Thesis Dinner, I sorted out everything that needs to be paid while I'm gone. Blah.

Dinner was about as successful as I had hoped. Phil gave his Master's defense, and since I hadn't heard anything about it, I sent out emails to make sure something was going to happen. Emi suggested P.F. Chang's, and then had Judo to go to instead of dinner. Still, we were able to muster 7 people, which isn't bad for a last minute thing.

Phil also wins the best comment of the day. A Certain Physics Professor was commenting about how Phil still needed to pass his StatMech class. Phil countered that he'd already passed all his classes in Germany, and even if he didn't pass here, he'd covered all the requirements there, so he was pretty secure either way. The CPP countered that he was bigger than the people in Germany. (Best. Comeback. Evar!)

Once my dryer finishes, I can finish packing, go to bed, and wake up early tomorrow to catch the bus to a plane to another plane to a car to an apartment to Julie's Thanksgiving-type Theatrical Hybrid Event.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sundays too

Blah blah, sleep sleep.

I did sit down and try to figure out what I need to accomplish before I leave town for Thanksgiving. The answer is "not actually that much," given that I should be able to get a decent amount of work done while gone.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

I should just sleep through saturdays

I mean, I do already anyway. Part of the problem is that after waking up and reading webpages for a bit, this Pokemon movie started. I've seen this one like three times before, and I never actually got out of bed, so I kind of just drifted in and out of consciousness while watching. It's a pretty good one, I mean they dress up Pikachu in renaissance style clothes. I wonder if the Poke-world had a similar renaissance.

Also: thanks a lot, intertron, for making like half the images in the search results for "lucario" porn. Good job on being creepy fucks, creepy fucks.

Friday, November 21, 2008

When one kind word meant more to me...

I don't really have anything today. I pretty much sucked at doing work this week, which makes me feel bad. Unfortunately, I'm not as depressed as usual, so I don't have any good lyrics for this Friday.

I guess the most exciting thing that happened to me today actually happened to Julie (she'll tell you about it at some point). Congratulations on getting married and having your life in order and all that!


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hello Kitty

I parked next to this car today. Hello Kitty seat covers and steering wheel cover. I also chose correctly, because I parked in the ramp, and it snowed.

Today was the kind of day where I probably could have slept all day and still accomplished about the same amount of stuff. I tried to get my AAS flight stuff organized, but my boss didn't know which grant number to use for that until the end of the day. I spent an hour tracking down my KITP information so I could figure out how the reimbursement works for that. I paid the registration fee for the conference, so I don't have to worry about the rate increase in December. Just as I was sitting down to start my rewrites, Ken returned from the wilds of Canada. I spent about an hour talking to him about Canada, dynamical friction, and the effects of supermassive black holes on their host galaxies. That was interrupted by Charles stopping by noting that there was a planetarium talk and that it was time to organize dinner. That was basically when I gave up on things for the day.

Dinner was a bit of a fiasco, as we had to wait for Carolyn and New Grad Student Girl Who Probably has a Shorter Name. They were TAing, and unwilling to kick people out 45 minutes after class ended. The talk was by Ed Brown, about the wonders of pulsars (spoiler: neutron stars are dense, and pretty boring when you get down to it) (second spoiler: some people don't spell check their slides).

I then spent two hours when I got home trying to write code to use libfann, which apparently has three versions: 1.0.0 which doesn't do much, 2.0.0 which does more, and X.X.X which the documentation is based on. It's always great when you directly follow code snippets from the documentation and get compiler errors. I wrote my own implementation of the missing utilities, which is retarded. I shouldn't need to write code to make the library work from arrays. There should be more options than "read from a file formatted exactly like this."

Ok, cookie time!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


In preparation for Thanksgiving, I spent the evening making four varieties of stuffing, in the convenient muffin style popularized by Rachel Ray. The basic recipe was:

9c cubed bread (roughly half and half pumpernickel and challah)
1 onion, choppity choppity
2 stalks celery, choppitied as well
salt, pepper, thyme, sage
lots of butter, most of a can of chicken broth

Fry up the onion and celery in the butter. I them took them out (leaving behind as much butter as possible), put the bread back in the pan with the broth, and brought it up to temperature. Mix mix mix everything together. This is the normal batch, with the three other varieties including one of the following:

1 link andouille sausage
5(ish?) mushrooms (there was some added butter here)
1 apple

I sauteed the shrooms, set them aside, and did the same to the sausage. I should have done the same to the apple, as it ended up a bit mushy.

The results?

Normal: Not bad. I should have put more herbs in, as it was a bit flat. Carrots would probably work too, as long as they didn't overpower. I needed to chop everything a bit more, as it was kind of lumpy.

Mushroom: Probably the best of the set. There was a lot of water still in the shrooms after sauteing, so it was a bit gummy. I used about twice the recommended amount of mushrooms, which I'd probably dial back to 1.5ish to help with this.

Andouille: A close second. The added oil helped the outside get a nice crust. The sausage had an excellent spicy hint, which helped perk up things. This was close to 4 times the recommended sausage content, but I think it was about right (something like a pound for a full batch).

Apple: I've had good apple stuffing before, and this wasn't it. Since I didn't cook them first, the muffins didn't set because there was too much moisture. It also had too sweet of a flavor, which a bit of carmelization would have helped.

Conclusion: It's easier to make stuffing when you're already making a bunch of stuff for thanksgiving. Mushrooms are good to add, as is sausage. Google will totally let you convert 6 tablespoons into quarter cups (1.5), and won't judge you at all for using retarded units. Don't eat four stuffin' muffins, as you'll feel like you're going to die.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My Suspect

Given the total lack of evidence at the scene of the crime, I must assume that the culprit was that most excellent and crafty pirate, Mr. Reginald P. Fuzzbottom, shown here during his last raid of Tortuga. I have seen him around the neighborhood recently, but assumed that he would be moving on with the change in weather. I see now that my sunflowers were just another treasure for him to pillage.

We will meet again, Mr. Fuzzbottom. And when we do, you will answer for my sunflowers.


Someone destroyed the sunflowers that I've had hanging up drying. Unfortunately, no clues were left behind other than the few remaining seeds on the sidewalk. There were no other remnants, suggesting that they were not just knocked over by the wind, but that they were certainly stolen.

Monday, November 17, 2008

oops forgot

I forgot about this today. :(

Things I learned today:

1) I hate manually recalculating numbers. I'm now pretty sure they're correct, though, so that's good. This should be the last time I do that.

2) Fish sticks are tasty. I've never had them before, and now I know.

3) Adult Swim thinks it's funny to put the new episodes of Moral Orel on random days.

4) Broken Twitter helped me fix a typo in a tweet before it was published.

5) That's a $63 steak. It's 28oz. That's a big steak.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

I should have eaten out yesterday

because today my car was covered in two inches of snow/ice pellets/miscellaneous frozen stuff. I also figured out I probably have two errors in my mass loss relations. Crap-tastic. I guess I'll be fixing that stuff tomorrow, and recalculating values for the hundred trillionth time.

It's also disappointing that the only place that makes patty melts now is IHOP.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Waste of a day

I spent today sleeping. Followed by a healthy dose of "thinking about going out to get food." Which I gave up on. So, the most successful day possible. I'll probably do something tomorrow. I have some work stuff I want to finish then.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Changed my mind

If I could see the sky above
And my mind could be set free
As wild white horses reached the shore
I’d stand alone and oversee

And if the bush before me burns
Should I turn my eyes away
And still the voices I can hear
As clear to me as the light of day

I believed in my dreams
Nothing could change my mind
Now I know what they mean
How could I be so blind

Cold sands of time
(winds that blow as cold as ice
Sounds that come in the night)
Shall hide what is left of me
(come from paradise)

I’ve been through times when no one cared
(words that were mine)
I’ve clouds in empty skies
When one kind word meant more to me
(shall last as a memory)
Than all the love in paradise

I believed in my dreams
Nothing could change my mind
Till I found what they mean
Nothing can save me now

Friday...same as always

I saw two squirrels this morning.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

James Bond

Wow good job dressing up for the movie, douchebags.

(Post movie edit: and I'm not just calling them douchebags because they dressed up for the movie. They had the popped collars and had to play with their cellphones throughout the entire movie.

I also got to play the fun game of, "I'm totally following you, Car in Front of Me." I didn't really intend to, but I wanted a milkshake, and figured that McDonalds was probably still open. This led me to a number of last minute decisions to turn where the other car was turning, and things like that. They eventually turned into a middle school, so unless they just wanted to check on their grades, I'm pretty sure I freaked them out.

And no, McDonalds was not still open, and Steak and Shake is gone, so I had to go to Quality Dairy to get milkshake ingredients. I asked if they made them (they have an ice cream counter), but the girl looked at me like she had never heard of this "milk-shake" I spoke of.

Nom nom, chocolate milkshake. With like brownie and candy pieces or something like that.)


Since there's a big James Bond movie shindig happening tonight, I'm just going to punt on this today, and take a nap instead.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Not thick

I have no idea what a "Thin Sliced Thin" is, or why you'd be so obsessive to require that your thins be sliced even thinner than they started with.

I'm currently plotting out a course to Nap-Town, because I'm hungry, and my chicken is still frozen. This means that my kung pao chicken will not be ready until 11 at the earliest. :( I also nearly ran over two people and a biker today, mostly because they think it's cool to completely ignore posted signs, traffic regulations, and common sense.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Despite my twitter threat that people may have to be burned (possibly to ash), bowling went over just as well as usual. I was "Venkman" in the above summary, as our theme was "Ghostbusters characters." Yay Bowling.

Ok, time to watch the new Moral Orel.

(I totally changed the post date and time on this! Ha ha!)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Stupid parking

Since it was cold today, and there was snow on the ground, all the people who had been biking in to work all drove. I drove around for a half hour looking for a parking space before deciding that it just wasn't worth it, opting instead to work from home. Part of this decision was me driving behind one of the physics professors, who is about the worst driver I've ever seen. Turning a corner never requires you to completely stop your car three times. Almost being hit by two different "girl in a giant SUV talking on her cellphone" didn't help either. I had to get groceries first, as I've been out of lunch stuff for a week.

I did see my squirrel friend when I was on my way to my car. I gave him some nuts from my lunch, but he was too scared to be hand fed. Oh well.

Ok, time to think more about globular cluster orbits. I think I've about solved one problem. Unfortunately, it wasn't the one I had intended to solve, but rather the one I was going to solve in Santa Barbara next January. Oops.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Dining out

I decided that I was done with crappy fast food. My plan was to go get something tasty at Pizza House while reading papers. Of course, I walk outside to see that my car is covered in "ice pellets." Not quite as bad as the six inches of snow that will be there in a month, but it's still depressing to see when you just want food.

I still don't like eating out at restaurants alone, but at least it was tasty. Boneless hot wings and BBQ bacon burger. Yes, I realize eating not pizza at a "Pizza House" may be a bit silly, but I wasn't really in the mood for pizza. Besides, I don't think I've ever had something there I didn't like.

And I learned that other people just generally ignore orbital effects for globular cluster evolution. Which doesn't really help me sort out how to proceed with relating my orbit simulations to my observations. Stupid universe, with your stupid three spatial dimensions. You just complicate things, dummy!

Friday, November 7, 2008

The sad song

The Sad Song

Right now is the saddest I've ever been,
(until now)

Sad, sad, sadder than sad,
I'm sadder with each passing moment,
I'm much sadder now than a second ago,
And sadly even sadder now still.

I look back at life twenty seconds ago,
When first I sang of my sorrow,
Twas a happier time,
Than I'm living through now,
Which is bliss compared with what's to follow.

Sad, sad, sadder than sad,
I'm sadder with each passing moment,
I'm much sadder now than a second ago,
And sadly even sadder now still.

Once my heart was filled with gloom and despair,
But those carefree days are over,
A bottomless pit
Of black hopeless dread,
Oh but that's when I was in the clover.

Sad, sad, sadder than sad,
I'm sadder with each passing moment,
I'm much sadder now than a second ago,
And sadly even sadder now still.

I'm sad, sad, sad.

DIAF, Comcast

I came home yesterday to find this tag on my door. Given that comcast keeps advertising about how, "cable customers are safe from the digital transition," I'm guessing this is just "Janine's" way of trying to scam me into upgrading to digital cable. Unfortunately, I've had digital cable before, and don't really feel like paying an extra fifty dollars for channels I used to get for free.

And I don't even think I know anyone with a home phone anymore. What is this, 1950?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Story of my life

see this is why this isn't going to work

because I really don't do enough exciting things to justify posting every day.

I spent today writing and rewriting an orbit calculator. Not really the most exciting thing ever. Blah.

Instead, I'll post these:

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day

Today's been weird. I woke up late, looked at my clock, and saw that it was noon. I figured I might as well just take another hour nap, and then work from home, since I'm rewriting the next paper. I do so, and discover after getting clean that it is now noon. Because I never fixed my bedroom clock for daylight savings. Yay? My laptop also conveniently unplugged itself overnight, so that helped me decide to just stay home and write.

I just got back from voting, which was pretty much the same as usual. Plus, I got to vote for a drain commissioner. Those drains are going to be so organized with this new guy!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Best Monday Ever

I finally heard back on the paper we submitted in July. After getting what was clearly the most petty referee ever in the history of peer review, we were accepted to ApJ, so it'll hopefully be published by the end of the year. I've added it to astro-ph, so it should show up tuesday night. I also got an email from Team England that the other paper I'm on was accepted to MNRAS. After a lengthy two week long review process. You see what I mean about the worst referee ever?

The picture today is one I took with my cell phone while walking to my car this evening. The bright thing is the moon, and the faint dot just above that is Jupiter. It seemed appropriate for today.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Steak and shake

This used to be the front entrance of the Okemos Steak and Shake. I don't know what happened, but one day I went to get a shake, only to find it boarded up. I'm posting this today, because I really want a patty melt.

Also because I haven't done anything today that would justify a blog post.