onefixedstar: (Default)
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the EPA must force power plans to protect aquatic species, even if it's expensive. Among those responsible for bringing the law suit are six U.S. states. According to the article:
The appeals court previously rejected arguments that some species are nuisances and require eradication. The court had also dismissed the claim that other species respond to population losses by increasing their reproduction.
Can there be anyone left at the EPA who actually cares about the environment? Surely they've all been driven out by the frustration of having to write statements like those above.

There's something seriously wrong when the court has to tell a government agency to do its damn job.

Bad cat!

Jan. 23rd, 2007 06:12 pm
onefixedstar: (mystery)
My (roommate's) cat is turning into a most manipulative creature. Most recently, she has decided to start making us get up at specific times. Her tactics are thus: When she decides one of us should get up, she begins doing something that she knows annoys us, pausing periodically to look over and make sure we're paying attention. If we ignore her long enough, she moves onto something even more destructive. If we get up to stop her, she's right back at it before we make it back to bed. If we lock her out of our bedrooms, she stands at the door and cries. (She's done this for as long as two hours straight before. Given her record of persistence, I'm quite certain she's capable of keeping it up all night.)

The obvious thing to do, of course, is to ignore her. That's easy to do when she's knocking over empty garbage cans, but less easy when she's chewing on my leather boots, or crying loud enough to disturb the neighbours.

The kicker is that as soon as one of us gets up, she goes and lies down in the now-empty bed.
onefixedstar: (xmas)
Of my four siblings, three have birthdays in December. When we were kids, this provided a great build-up to Christmas. The first birthday marked the beginning of the holiday season--and was usually accompanied by the decorating of the tree--and after that we had parties and cake and gifts nearly every weekend, leading up to the grand finale on Christmas Day. Of course, it also made my birthday in early January seem rather anticlimactic. Looking back, I pity my poor parents: four birthdays and Christmas in six weeks must have been awfully expensive. I also admire my mother's determination to see to it that we each got a separate and complete birthday celebration, with our own birthday cake and birthday presents wrapped in birthday paper. (Rather ironically, my youngest brother--who had the good sense to be born in late March, well away from the holiday season--is the only one who does not get a complete and separate birthday celebration every year. He shares his birthday with our father.)

Today is the last pre-Christmas sibling birthday, which means that Christmas is almost here. I think I'm actually ready. I finished my Christmas shopping yesterday, save for the one gift that was ordered online with the guarantee that it would be here by today, and which hasn't shown up yet. (I'm still hoping my empty mailbox means that the mail delivery is late today, and not that it's come and gone with not gift in sight.) I made truffles yesterday to take up to my parents' house on Christmas Eve (if I don't eat them first). I've mostly finished cleaning the apartment for the guests who will be staying here while I'm gone. Only a few more things are left on the errand list. Today and tomorrow are for marking exams and doing the final bit of cleaning, tonight is for dinner with the brother who lives far, far away, and Sunday night I get to hang out with all of my siblings in the same house, something we do far too rarely. I'm looking forward to it.

Whining

Dec. 5th, 2006 03:38 pm
onefixedstar: (sandmanweber)
I hate it when coffee shops get my order wrong. A minor complaint, I know, but it's an issue that's been reoccurring for me lately. Last week, Starbucks gave me peppermint hot chocolate instead of the peppermint mocha that I ordered (and paid for), and today Second Cup gave me a plain latte instead of the maple latte that I ordered (and paid for). Notice how they always give a cheaper drink than the one ordered? The hot chocolate wasn't a big deal--I like that well enough, and it was fairly similar to what I had ordered. But I don't drink plain lattes (I find coffee undrinkable without massive amounts of sugary flavouring), so today the whole latte is going down the drain, and I'm out $3.50 and the caffeine that I was hoping would enable me to do work.
onefixedstar: (mystery)
I'm oddly excited about the new James Bond film. I'm not usually a huge fan of James Bond--I like action movies well enough, so I'll sit through 'em, but I don't usually them out on my own--but I am a sucker for "how people came to be who they are" movies, and this one seems to qualify. So I decided to go see this one on opening night. Unfortunately, the individual I was with scoffed when I said we should buy our tickets at least two hours in advance, before we went out for dinner. By the time we got back to the theatre after dinner, the rest of the shows for that evening were sold out. So we went to see The Prestige instead. An entertaining movie, but a bit disturbing.

Sadly, that incident set the tone for the rest of the weekend. My entire weekend has involved little things going wrong. All very minor things. Too small to even complain about, really. Unimportant in the grand scheme of things, absolutely. Nothing I'll post here, because I'd laugh at myself doing it. It's really the accumulation that's troubling, and even that I wouldn't have noticed if not for the first thing. Ah well, the weekend is almost over and I should be able to slip out to see Casino Royale later this week.
onefixedstar: (mystery)
I spent Halloween at B's, watching Dawn of the Dead (both the original and the remake), and waiting to hand out candy to the kids. Unfortunately, all of the trick-or-treaters passed us by. It wasn't that they weren't any--we saw several groups stop next door. I guess they just didn't see his place as one to stop at, despite the jack-o-lantern we had sitting on the step. I suspect it might be because his apartment door is right next to the store door, and so people assume the whole house is a commercial property. Oh well--more chocolate for us!
onefixedstar: (mystery)
My cat managed to turn on scroll lock on my computer this evening while trotting on my keyboard. This is particularly impressive on two counts:

1) I had no idea how to do it myself. I had to go online to find out how to turn it off after I finally figured out that it was scroll lock that was causing Excel to behave so strangely.

2) Turning on scroll lock on my laptop requires simultaneously hitting two keys located on completely different parts of the keyboard.

In other news, she can also now leap to the top of the highest bookcase in my room, which means that I no longer have any safe place to hide things from her. But I suppose she'll learn that irons are hot the good old-fashioned way: by burning herself.
onefixedstar: (academic)
My newest pet peeve: people without laptops or other electronic devices who sit at one of the very small number of library cubicles with power outlets while ignoring the many perfectly good, entirely empty cubicles without power outlets.
onefixedstar: (mystery)
Two weeks, no update. I'm getting pretty bad at this. Mostly, I think, because I don't feel like I'm doing anything all that interesting right now. I'm kind of in a holding pattern--not really progressing in my work, and trying to figure out how to achieve forward momentum. It's kind of a slog, right now.

Happily, things outside of my work are okay. Thanksgiving with my family last weekend was marvellous. We had about fourteen people in total, which was a nice size for Thanksgiving. My parents have been including some American dishes with Thanksgiving dinner since they returned from living in the States, most notably candied sweet potatoes and green bean casserole. Frankly, I'm rather pleased that green beans have replaced peas on the holiday menu. And the turkey and stuffing and potatoes and rutabaga were all unchanged, so there was enough continuity from childhood to keep me happy.

Last weekend was also the weekend for hanging with my high school friends, mostly for the sake of the one person who still lives out-of-town. (The rest of us have slowly drifted back here in the ten years since we finished high school.) It was a theme party, as all of our recent gatherings have been. The theme this time was Monday Night RAW--everyone brought a raw food dish, and we watched movies featuring wrestlers and former wrestlers. I tried for raw fruit pie, and ended up with something more like raw squares when I discovered that I had no pie plate, and was forced to use a 9x9 pan instead. It turned out reasonably well, though it was better when topped with the vanilla icing-and-cream-cheese fruit dip brought by another party attendee. So much for a healthy dessert. :D
onefixedstar: (mystery)
I spent the weekend in San Diego for Brent's brother's wedding. It was my first trip to California, and it was far too short. The weather was lovely, the ocean was lovely, the jacuzzi was lovely, and the wedding was of course lovely too--on the beach, in the sun. Getting out of Toronto was not so lovely--we got there the recommended 99 minutes in advance, and then proceeded to spend an hour checking in and checking our bags. Needless to say, this put us a little behind schedule in getting through the rest of the lines. We were pulled out and placed in the rush lines for both security and customs, which was good since nearly everyone else had boarded the plane by the time we reached the gate. (Apparently they all knew enough to show up more than 90 minutes in advance.) Coming back was okay--much less rushed. The only minor incident occurred when, for some reason, Canadian Customs decided to redirect B over to the Immigration Desk where they looked at his papers and said, "We don't know why they sent you here."

Tomorrow, sadly, I must return to working. Hopefully my ears will have recovered from the landing by then.

Gasp

Sep. 14th, 2006 02:03 am
onefixedstar: (Default)
Is Google going evil?

I guess we'll have to wait and see.
onefixedstar: (mystery)
Hmm, you'd think after finishing my comp, I'd have more time to post. But of course, now I'm not trying to desperately to procrastinate, and so I'm less motivated. Instead, I've been trying to catch up with things I let slide over the summer. The past two weeks have mostly been errands and housework: fall cleaning (finally!) and taking in pants to be hemmed and unpacking boxes that have been sitting in my room for two years now...things like that. I updated, backed up, and sychronized my computers today, which is why I'm here again. Tomorrow I might even try backing up my laptop to a location that isn't located in my apartment just in case I don't have time to grab my laptop on the night when the space heater finally sets fire to our living room. I even have an external hard drive waiting in my office for this very purpose, but I haven't backed anything up on it in about six months.

Oh, I've also been reading. Mostly at the gym, on the bike, but occasionally I'll finish the book when I get home. (The inability to stop in the middle of a work of fiction, even if it's three in the morning and I have to get up at eight, is a problem of mine.) Most recently I've been reading Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets, which is dense and depressing enough that even I don't want to read it all in one go, and Dropped Threads 3, which I found a little disappointing. There were a few good pieces in there, but a lot more fluffy feel-good pieces. Chicken Soup for the Woman's Soul, but in advice form rather than story form. I picked up a couple more books at the library this afternoon; maybe one of them will be better. In the mean time, I think today was my last catch up day. From now on, catching up will be done in the evening, and my days will be spent planning my second comp.
onefixedstar: (mystery)
I got up at 7am this morning. Voluntarily. Yeah, I don't know how that happened either, except that I went to bed at 9:30, and I guess that was all the sleep I could take. It's very odd being on a regular people schedule--eating breakfast before noon, going to the 24-hour grocery store before the deli counter closes. Weird. Wonder how long I can keep it up for?
onefixedstar: (academic)
I'm done, I'm done, I'm done.

Actually, I was done Friday at 4:00. Yes, I handed it in early. I could have edited instead, but I decided that what I could accomplish in an hour wasn't worth the mental stress. And then I stepped away from the computer, and hung out with my roommate for the night--she introduced me to one of her favourite French bistros--and yesterday I went shopping with B. (It seems that if you want to get out, in the rain, shopping is one of the few things you can do.) Today I'm off to see my parents and sibs. (The local ones, anyway.) And then tomorrow, I'll consider getting back to work. Maybe.

A month or so from now, I find out if I passed.

Comp update

Sep. 1st, 2006 10:03 am
onefixedstar: (sandmanweber)
Seven hours hours to go. I've finished two-and-a-half questions, with only a few more pages to type and I am so sick of it. I just want to sleep, but alas, I cannot. I must finish.
onefixedstar: (academic)
Actually, it began about twelve hours ago, when I picked up my comp questions. They aren't too bad--a lot of "relate this book to the wider field" type questions. As long as I can stay focused for the next four days, I should be fine. I hope.

Eeek!

Aug. 25th, 2006 05:20 pm
onefixedstar: (sandmanweber)
My comp starts Monday at 9:00am (or whenever I pick up the exam). I don't expect I'll be around much until it's over on Friday.
onefixedstar: (Default)
When I took my laptop down a couple of weeks ago to get the graphics card motherboard replaced, I also mentioned that I thought the hard drive might be failing. Something about it not being able to save important files like the Master File Table. They, of course, found nothing wrong. Now my computer is buzzing and rattling. Very loudly. And won't start. Think they'll believe me now?

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