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Octopus Tool Use!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8408233.stm

"One of the researchers, Dr Julian Finn from Australia's Museum Victoria, told BBC News: "I almost drowned laughing when I saw this the first time."



"Australian Scientist dies discovering octopus tool use. "

"Naturally we're all terribly upset about this," said a press release issued by the museum. "But every time we try to have a moment of silence for him, someone snickers, and then we're all laughing ourselves sick."
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To Do: (A fall cleaning list)

Clean bathroom
floor
sweep
mop
toilet
sink
tub
shower walls
shower curtain

Clean kitchen
floor
Robot
Handheld vaccuum around the edges
mop
Fridge (just the scary stuff)
countertops
stove
possibly the pans.

Living room
Robot the floors
wash the bear bed couch cover

Laundry
All of it.

Catbox

Huge stack of unread magazines in my room

rest of the library books

As much tv as necessary, including SGU and Sanctuary.


Thankfully, the sheepskin is not on my schedule for today, so the dog should be okay. My room in general is not on the list, though it should be, but apparently I don't mind living in a pit of untidiness so long as the public areas are clean. (I think it's because I have an excuse for not cleaning my room: I was very busy cleaning the rest of the house, honestly, don't you people pay attention???)
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New Hair color



I figured, why not? I've already got the coloring for it, might as well try something a little crazy. (The color is called Cherry Cola.)

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Fun note: as always, hair dye dyes skin. I felt the strands stick to my face a couple of times, but wasn't really worried about it because I figured on my skin it would be almost exactly the same color as my freckles. And I was right. To the point that not only did my hairdresser not get some spots off first try, but when I was correcting him (once I had my glasses on), I pointed out a few places on my face that were still stained, one of which turned out to be an actual freckle.
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The Awesomeness of my College Reunion

I am trying to write a post about going to my reunion and remembering my college. It is not working.

In the mean time, if you still live where you went to college, know that I kinda envy you. Not that I wanted to stay in K, and not that I don't love Boston. Just that I wish others had moved here with me. :)
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What I would have said if I went to meeting today

I thought about going to meeting today. I slept in instead, but I thought about it before and since, and if i'd gone, I think I would have stood up and spoken, which I have never done in meeting. If I had gone and had stood up, I would have said something like this:
*
When my grandmother was little, she lived about three streets away from here. She watched people come here Sunday mornings, and she decided that she liked the look it. Of the meeting house, of the people, or of the religion, I don't know. But when she grew up and had kids, she raised them as Quakers, at State College Monthly Meeting in PA. I was born in that meeting, and grew up being Quaker, and knowing how much my grandmother valued Quakerism. When I started coming here, every time she asked if I had a meeting, and I told her I was attending meeting here, she would tell me again how she found Quakerism though this meeting.

She died Friday night, in her sleep. I will miss her.
*
Of course, there's a lot that I wouldn't have been able to say in the meeting. Like how she went back to school after her youngest, my dad, went to college. And she finished her BA and then got a PhD. And moved to New Jersey to teach. How we went to get her when she moved to my home town, and I was 8 or 9, and couldn't even remember what she looked like I'd seen her so rarely. She had loong hair, down to her waist, that she wore in a bun. When she moved to Lewisburg, she cut it short and wore it that way from then on. When I went to Italy on study abroad, I read a book called Mothers of Feminism, about Quaker women in the early days, and I wrote back to Libby about how brave these women were, to tell their husbands they were going ministering, and leave their children behind and travel the country on horseback, going to meetings and talking about god. And even the old women would do it! 75 years old, and traveling around ministering! And she wrote back and reminded me that she was 75, and moving to Philadelphia to work for the Quaker UN.

She was 85. She was living in a nursing home, in the first level of it (independent living?), and she was rapidly approaching the time when she wouldn't get her own apartment, just a room in the next level (assisted Living). (my father made a Dante reference here.) She had been getting more and more forgetful every time I saw her, but she approached it in a wonderful way, as suits a scientist. She was curious and interested in everything new to her, and everything was new to her. She'd say, "Now who are you?" to me, and I'd explain it all, including my parents, and their names, and their relationship to her. And she'd say, "Is your father here?" and look around interestedly. For a while she would write it all down, but that didn't really work because she'd just ask you the same thing again, and then write that down. The last time I saw her, I went with her and my uncle to Woods Hole, where she grew up, and she had a wonderful time. She knew everything! Where she'd lived, where other people had lived, how she had dated a boy with a motorcycle who lived over on the rich part of the bay, and her parents had disapproved. And she told me about her dad, who discovered the Redfield Ratio, and worked in the Woods Hole Oceanographical Institute, and showed us their house that is now part of the WHOI, and we had a wonderful day. And we drove back to my aunt's house, and got out, and she asked me again who I was, and I wondered if she had ridden the whole way back, wondering who I was in the back, and how it didn't matter to her at all. She wasn't scared or fearful of the unknown, she liked learning everything just as much every time.

I will miss her. But, I have been missing her for the better part of 10 years now, I think. Definitely 6 or more. I miss the grandmother I grew up with, and I am sad because even though that woman was gone, now she will never come back, not even for the split seconds i'd see now and then.
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Slow Cooker Awesomeness

Okay, my best efforts recreation of the AMAZING tagine I just made.

Spice mix:
2 tsp ginger
2 tsp coriander
1.5 tsp cinnamon
1.5 tsp pepper
1.5 tsp tumeric
1.25 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp allspice
.5 tsp cloves


Take a non stick pan, add a splash of olive oil and 2 tsp of the spice mix. Heat it up (as if you were doing curry). Throw in 2 sliced (vidalia) onions, and like 6 cloves garlic. I added water on and off to keep them cooking till they were soft. I had intended to use the tiny sliced plums from last year, but they'd gotten freezer-burned/dehydrated down to nothinginess. I threw them in anyways, since it had originally called for prunes. I dumped it into the crock pot. I chopped up the steak meat (about 1.5 pounds), which was frozen, and browned it quickly in the skillet, then dumped it in the crock pot too, along with a cup of water, 1.5 tsp salt, three generous squirts of honey from a squeeze bottle and, because I wasn't sure about the plums, two tiny chestnut crab apples (best apples ever). And then I cooked it for about 4 hours in the crockpot.

When I was done letting it cook, I made couscous with 2 parts water, 1 part broth.

Serve them together. Scarf it up. AWESOMENESS.

And it was AMAZING.
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(no subject)

So, I love Eureka. I have loved it since the first moment I saw ads for it, whereupon I went to the internet and found all of it to watch. And the first season one of the BIG plot points revolved around the son of the love interest/head of the company. Who has not only disappeared from the show, he has NEVER BEEN MENTIONED this season. This season when his mother has been pregnant and talking about having a baby, blah blah blah, there has been not even a "gosh, X (I can't even remember his name any more) is doing so well off in Y, where he is doing Z." I mean, I don't require small children to stay on shows forever, but they could at least pretend he still is a human being and talk about him from time to time. They talk about other people who have left the show.

That said, I still do love it, and its interesting view of science. Not as much as Psych, though. I love Psych so much that would like to marry the writers from Psych. Well, really I would like to marry James Roday (who write scripts too!), but if he is taken, I will settle.
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How I Lost My Teeth Today

The actual removal was no big deal. He did the one he was most worried about first, and it was completely painless and no problem (he'd been worried it would break when he was pulling on it.) The other three were more resistant to the idea of coming out, and he ended up having to pause and give me more novacaine for each of them. But no problem, really. Once I was numbed up properly I walked home, stopping on the way for the prescription and some other stuff from CVS. Of course, because I'm contrary, I can't keep the guaze pads in my mouth to stop the bleeding completely because I was like to choke because I couldn't swallow with the stupid lumps of gauze in my mouth. So they came out. I've been dribbling blood a little ever since, but that's preferable to how it was feeling.

I slept for a few hours while the novacaine wore off, and when I woke up, I had this hollow, numb feeling in my jaw that took a while to figure out was probably the holes hurting. Numb from drugs segues neatly into numb with pain. I drank soyprotein and milk (least fun milkshake ever) and took my T3. And it took a lot longer to kick in than I'm used to with pain drugs, but hopefully it will last until 5, like it's supposed to. (It still hurts, I just care less.)

And while I waited for it to kick in, I handled tickets from techsupport. working on my day off, go me.
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Dragoncon 2009, part 2

This video was stuck in my head for AGES at Dragoncon.



I posted it on my facebook page as well, so some of you have already seen it, but I feel that ALL of you should have it stuck in your head. Why *IS* he climbing the mountain?
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Dragoncon 2009

My wisdom teeth come out in two days. I am terrified. I predict a very miserable weekend for me.

Dragoncon was, as always, Dragoncon. Last year had more awesome panels (mostly due to the huge number of stargate peoples.), but I actually watched more because they broadcast some good panels on the hotel tv stations. The dealer's room had more crap than anyone could ever in the world need. This year, there was steampunk fixings on top of the geek tee-shirts stands, corset stands, weapon booths, gaming tables, and Browncoat stuff. The exhibit halls were more sedate, as usual, but basically the same stuff in better layouts, and more. The Art show was smaller than last year. The glass making woman whose stuff i love looking at wasn't there. There was the usual scary stuff (Please, universe, we have enough paintings of anthropomorphic animals and sad panda-girls, so we can stop making those now.), and the occasional spark of quality.

I bought an insane amount of books there. I mean, usually I try to buy a couple, but resist because I don't buy all that many books at all. But I had taken The Patriot Witch there with me, and I started it, and then finished it, and NEEDED to have the other two right away. (I didn't actually read them right away, but I had them, which is all that was necessary at the time.) But they were only like, 14 or 16 or so, and the minimum charge was 30, so...so I picked up a sequel to one of the paranormal vampire romances that I do like (Molly Harper, "Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men."), and a first-in-a-series fantasy novel that looked good (The Accidental Sorcerer which was AWESOME (despite less than stellar copy editing) to the point that I HAD to buy the sequel in the airport, and read it on the flight home.), and some fun-looking Space Opera Romances, (my all time favorite genre): Sandra MacDonald "The Outback Stars" and a Wen Spencer. And I think one other I have forgotten. I also made a list of the others that tempted me: more SOR, the new C. E. Murphy Urban Shaman book, etc to look up in the library.

The costumes were awesome as usual. I'm SO over steampunk for the sake of steampunk. That said, Steampunk Ghost Busters(Apparition Hunters? I missed their Steampunk name), Steampunk Professor X, Steampunk Green Lantern: all approved of. I still approve of steampunk with a purpose. I am also over people stopping at the top of escalators, people stopping in the middle of the hallways to take photos, people stopping to have their picture taken, people stopping.