azurelunatic: Thalia, Muse of Comedy, in a plaster relief sculpture. She is adorned with an ivy wreath, holds crook & mask (Thalia)
17:56 2013-11-29
THE STORY OF THANKSGIVING IS A SCIENCE-FICTION STORY, by Scott Alexander
It has come to my attention that people are woefully uninformed about certain episodes in the Thanksgiving narrative. For example, almost no one mentions the part where Squanto threatens to release a bioweapon buried under Plymouth Rock that will bring about the apocalypse.



Thanksgiving! (Thanksgayming)

As is becoming startlingly frequent for me, halfassed my Thanksgiving plans, but had a lovely time.

Read more... )
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azurelunatic: Monkey King swings his cudgel  (monkey smash)
I really really needed a "white flowers and MURDER" perfume for work today. The J-Horror BPAL from [personal profile] synecdochic worked wonders today.

I woke up substantially before my alarm, and decided to say fuck it and get out of bed around 8:30 (only a half-hour early). Then I took a leisurely drive to work, chatting with Nora the whole way (well, post-coffee).

My Overlady popped over to see what was the matter, that I was in at the normal beginning of the engineering day. I explained. Her 12:00 was with someone I have dearly missed; I suggested some choice snippets to mention. Basically no sooner did she pop off to her own office than lb and the angry man with all the tattoos showed up. My cube was a distracting cave of wonders, but we went over the sortable chart of grouses (the wiki page with the timeline of the helldesk software, the sortable wikitable with requested improvements, the R&D end-user profile, and the picture of the ruffed grouse) and made a few edits and priority confirmations before marching off to the meeting itself. Beldorion was not in the office today, and Gramp had a conflicting meeting.

The meeting was on the ass-end of campus, in perhaps literally the furthest building from where lb sits: definitely the horizontally furthest, although there is a diagonal building which may have a little greater actual distance. Some people were at no pains to be friendly to engineering-land. We got there a minute after by my watch, while the people already in the room were giving it a few more minutes to see who else would be there and get the webex started.

I was correct in yesterday's assertion that today's meeting was unmissable. I believe I am recalling my manager verbatim when I relate that her instructions to me were: "Give 'em hell."

In the room: the aforementioned incomprehensible twerp, the highly placed dev running the demo, someone sitting quietly and shutting up, Too Much Eyeliner Lady (somewhere highly placed in local ownership of the helldesk software, but a consummate buck-passer), someone from IT, and then the engineering-land contingent. We were, in order: the Desert Islander, very chill; the Angry Tattooed Man, angry; lb, stern; Azz, by turns stern and earnestly, specifically, functionally constructive. Engineering-land contingent got printouts of the wiki page for reference. lb and I took notes (him every now and then on his phone, me with pen and paper).

The engineering contingent post-mortem lasted the twenty minutes back to engineering-land, with further follow-up to follow at some point I am sure.

Lunch was with Purple, and pleasant. He has an ambitious project to spearhead with the knowledge and blessing of his manager.

Wednesday is the day when the cafeteria does their hump day takeout program: place your order before early afternoon, and you too can take home a corporate cafeteria quality meal at takeout prices. It looked decent, so I ordered.

My Overlady came back from her 12:00 with many bits of information. She perched on my couch and shared the intelligence from this meeting. Oh, my.

My computer's been in need of a reboot for a bit, so I was chipping away at getting the things done that I needed to get done before that point. Eventually it hit mid-evening. I pinged Purple and (after flailing at [personal profile] sithjawa a bit) mentioned the concept of dinner, and did he want any. Which he did. We opted for my cube this time. I have a guest couch! He said he'd be over in a bit, and to feel free to start without him (always a dangerous statement from an engineer). I was just separating the plates when he arrived. It's nice to have guests in my cube! I began to tell him some of the highlight from my Overlady's 12:00.

I heard Designer Sparkles coming out of an office. "There's nobody here at this hour!" she said. "No," my Overlady agreed, "except maybe Azure." Designer Sparkles wandered out of the office in search of places more like home. And as my Overlady came around the corner, there I was! With a Purple in my cube.

Then followed a delightful conversation wherein my Overlady shared intelligence from her 12:00 with Purple, we compared some experiences raising hell in school, and all in all a great time was had. My Overlady headed off in search of her own dinner, and we finished ours. Then Purple went back to his desk, and I had the joy of a very crashed computer in need of some Windows updates. My next task: install Notepad++, because I do much better about autosaving in that than in Windows Notepad. (Which I just typed as Nopetad.)

Parking lot conversation was largely fishbrick. Also puddinghandle, toiletjello, blenderpoop, shortsheet, notebolt, and other mostly theoretical forms of mayhem. To be clear: very few of these are actually good ideas to do! Puddinghandle: mix up some very, very chocolatey chocolate pudding. Put a roll of toilet paper on top of someone's car, to catch their attention. Spread the pudding under the door handle. Toiletjello: this is a Shawn stunt. Mix clear gelatin with the boiling water. Pour into the cold water of the toilet bowls at school. (This works best in a cold climate.) Allow enough time to set before the students come in. Shawn was disappointed in the janitors in that they did not think of the hot water (add more hot water, perhaps from the coffee pot, to dissolve the jello safely) and instead removed it by hand. (Purple: "That would be an unforgettable parfait.") Blenderpoop: targeting the Insufferable Smoothie person, either by actually doing it (ideally with multiple DNA sources) or just leaving a note with a crude depiction of a stick figure pooping in their blender. Shortsheet: this is the classic prank. Notebolt: leave a few spare bolts on somebody's desk with a note saying something like "I think you'll need these." The bolts are not actually from anything they own, but they spend some time looking fruitlessly. (Sort of like releasing the five pigs, numbered 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, into a sufficiently large building.)

Beardwatch 2014: still on.

At the end of the day, I still smell faintly of white flowers, although less like murder.
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
Discussions with [personal profile] norabombay about various items including Original Male Dog? Always in order. Discussions with [personal profile] sithjawa about the most random stuff? Also always in order.

Came in to an amazing slice of blackly hilarious helpdesk software trivia that made my Overlady start swearing (louder) and made our manager laugh, say something bleak, and then shake her fists.

Received an invitation to sit down in my place amongst the yelliest of the people giving helpdesk software feedback, tomorrow. They will demonstrate to us some things which they think will fix some of the worst of the issues. I will, of course, be taking notes.

There was a pleasant interlude involving a bunch of 45+-year-old dudes talking about the future of mobile security, to a crowd who appreciates the ability to break shit. After both Purple and Mr. Zune said that they couldn't go but were interested in hearing about it, I took notes. My contribution to the evening involved the question: So when your mobile phone, which is basically the key to your entire life at this point in the future, gets pickpocketed off you on BART -- and your data is fine, it's all locked up -- how screwed are you, exactly? I asked this because there had been a lot of focus on how to secure various things and when to distrust more than you already distrusted, and yes those things are important, but a lot of people overlook the fact that any small, portable, and valuable item can and will disappear in the presence of a trained pickpocket.

I came back to find that:

a) the clueless wonder who seems to be the forward-facing face of the Let's Fix This Helpdesk Product had managed to do it again

and

b) crisis involving my Overlady's travel.

Both of those were straightened out. The hold music for the travel place was not bad, my cube was in need of some straightening, I got my notebook set up for tomorrow's meeting, and (once I got through to a real human) the source of the problem was one of those minor typos which can result in general catastrophic but ultimately temporary failure. I had been worried that it was the sort of thing which would ultimately require my Overlady's personal intervention, but it was all good.

The helpdesk, on the other hand!

The ticket I had filed was because of an error in their notification emails. This is one of the ones where my age and experience are a distinct advantage. I remember reading multipart emails in a text-only email reader. I was on mailing lists in those days. I am familiar with the way these things look, and the way they are supposed to look. So when the Sortable Chart of Grouse was being compiled, I chose one of the items I thought more low-hanging to make sure was formally filed.

The basic concept is this:

In the context of emails from the helpdesk software, links are not intended to be optional extras. Links are intended to be, among other things, tools for resetting one's password, tools for re-opening tickets which have been closed before their time, and tools for reading and interacting with the entire ticket and all its gods-given comments. While you probably could read the contents of the email, and then go to the website and hunt down the ticket based on the information in the email, that is not actually the recommended workflow. The links are intended to be integral.

Once you agree that the link is integral to the experience of this notification, the second part begins.

Some people, whether by virtue of them being a technological monk having taken a vow of poverty, or on a mobile device, or some other reason, have mail readers which only give them the text/plain part of a multipart message. further explication, and ranting, ensues. )


So after that, I washed my coffee mug, Purple wrapped up what he was working on, and we headed out to the parking lot. As we chatted about this and that (including security, and how sometimes people who are not entirely clueless about security will go for a less-secure choice to make sure that they're not permanently locked out of their shit, when the consequences of a bad guy getting into their shit are less terrible than the consequences of them getting locked out of their shit) and watched the night. Purple remarked that the security cart was moving sort of like a wooden duck in a shooting gallery. I wasn't sure if this security guy was That Security Guy. I mentioned that if he was, I kind of hoped he was getting the wrong idea, even blah blah blah. Purple pointed out, quite astutely, that people are kind of bad at the "maybe they like me?!?!?" perception check. He had a story (an ex was into him when he wasn't sure she was, and it was good). I had a story: Fencing-Dave. (And my scary, scary father.)

I will be back at bad hours of the morning. Because tomorrow's meeting is unmissable.
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
Work involved minimal direct fuckery, although I anticipate a debriefing which may be *epic* from some of my colleagues in the project of Keeping Shit Less Fucked. There was also a really delicious lemon and raspberry cupcake on my desk, which was good because the ones on the collaboration table had nearly all vanished by the time I came in, and the last few evaporated by mid-afternoon to many exclamations of delight from the team. "These muffins are REALLY GOOD!" -Researcher Carmageddon's ex-officemate

I need to start pinging Purple before wandering over, in case there's just a little bit more to do before it's possible to head out. Heh. Although we fairly well erased the advantages of getting out at the time we did by accidentally spending two and a half hours talking in the parking lot. Oops. (There was a lot to talk about.)

In the portion of the discussion about childhood adventures with names (and how my wallet name really isn't the one I answer to), he mentioned that one of the lovely fun things his elementary schoolmates had tried was calling him by the feminine equivalent of his name. I cocked my head at him. "You've always looked more like a [different name] to me," I said.

So then we had to get into *why*. Back in February, Purple had occasion to check the office mailbox, and saw my name on a couple envelopes. This resulted in the use of the phrase "mail fairy." Which got hilarious. In the intervening months, the costume in my head went from a not particularly flattering purple getup to a really rather nice green satin bustier with a dense netting skirt, with the obligatory matching wings and toe shoes with long, long ribbons. From there we got onto the topic of Second Life...

There was a certain amount of security presence in the parking lot. If That Security Guard was among them, I hope he came to the entirely wrong conclusion about the nature of my relationship with Purple. While it is shitty and patriarchal if a guy attributes more weight to "woops, she is the property of some other guy" than to "actually she doesn't seem that into me", if That Security Guard decides to drop the matter with no further conversation, then we will not have an awkward conversation about the matter. And while he has brought the awkward to the conversation and all I would be doing is hanging a lampshade on it, it is still not an exchange that I relish. (I do thrive on a certain kind of Potential High Drama, but thaaaaat's not one of the ones I signed up for.)

Purple and I compared some scars. I didn't pull down my shirt to show him the scar from the hot soup. It's not really a great one to show in a work parking lot, even if it's something I'd show in a tank top.

We got on to the topic of lettuce. Purple is adamantly against iceberg lettuce in nearly every particular. I believe that it has a place, and in addition to the wrapping-for-real-food that Purple allots it, it is decent in burritos, where it is less wilty and also less strongly flavored than some other lettuces. This resulted in some happy chatter about delicious, delicious salads, and the party broke up in favor of dinner.
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
There is a thing that sometimes people do, to be funny or for emphasis or whatever. It is the thing where they substitute the letter L for R in words, such as "VICTOLY" for "VICTORY".

There are many possible places and reasons to have picked up doing this, including the ever-popular "somebody I know was doing it and it seemed like fun".

The roots of this substitution is making fun of people with no distinction between R/L sounds, which is common when people whose first language is Chinese learn to speak English.

Which is why I cringe every time I encounter it, and would prefer that people not do this around me.
azurelunatic: California poppies. (California girl)
Yay family!

This weekend has involved some pretty wacky sleep schedule things, although I have also managed to catch up somewhat on dishes, take out some trash, do some laundry, get a little bit of vacuuming in, and modify a skirt which really required a slit up the side in order to be wearable.

There was also the S-themed family dinner, featuring Guide Dog Aunt, Woodworking Uncle (who has located a distinguishing hobby in addition to the fishing, skiing, and tangoing), Tay, Tay's Young Man, and a cameo appearance of Infamous Cousin. The poodle and Sharkface also attended, with the guinea pig wheeping from his enclosure. The menu wound up including, among other things: salmon, strawberries, sourdough, soft cheese and savory snacks, squash, salad, soba salad, and satsuma marmalade. (No soft meat crowns.)

Since dinner involved cooked salmon, Infamous Cousin scrammed before it went in the oven, but not before happily bonding a bit with Tay's Young Man about delicious sushi.

Tay has been back in town about a week, and is happy to have hit at least the end of tomato season, though sad to have missed the local avocados.

I realized that Tay has not yet met JD and Teshi! At some point we must fix this. I also mentioned that a few of my #cupcake crowd from work are musical and it would be nifty if they happened to get along with the musical members of my family. Purple is a synthesizer kind of guy. phone does computer stuff and plays live bass. At this, Tay's Young Man did a bit of a double-take. Apparently there are not that many people in the world who go by phone. They are vaguely acquainted. And I realized that I sort of register #cupcake as family now.

Guide Dog Aunt let in Sharkface, who was very happy to see everyone. Since everyone did not make much of her (as we'd been warned) she kenneled up and settled down quickly. After a while she came out and flopped on her mat next to the couch.

The evening's entertainment, after dinner, was baking crackers. Guide Dog Aunt had mixed up the dough before dinner, but hadn't prepared all of them by dinner time. So there were shenanigans involving the pasta-roller, which is also useful for crackers. I sang the roller song, which surprised Tay. (There are a lot of little songs from our childhood, and shared context makes them hilarious. Perhaps I will get around to recording some of them at some point, just for history's sake.)

Sharkface decided that my hand was delicious and licked me and my cardigan sleeve all over. Sharkface is a guide dog puppy. This means that her come-when-called is a little different from most dogs. Most dogs will stand in front of you and look at you expectantly. A guide dog needs to do something else to make sure that their person will realize they're present and waiting. A guide dog sticks their head between their person's knees, generally. One of the things that Sharkface will grow out of is the tendency to wallop people in the crotch a little bit. This head-knee training also sometimes results in a phenomenon that Guide Dog Aunt calls "up-skirt nosing". That was about when Sharkface decided that the backs of my knees were delicious. Since she was not sharktoothing me, this was fine, if tickly.

Next time there will be another lettered theme, which should be delightfully wacky. At some point I'm to hang out with Tay and Tay's Young Man up in the city. He'll let me know when they're playing the tavern, also.
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azurelunatic: Obviously this is the place to come if you want to get murdered by lunatics.  (murdered by lunatics)
It was, yet again, beer bash day. I don't much care for beer. I have a large box of hard hard lemonade left over from OS Bridge, which I'm slowly making my way through. Having done the same once previous, to excellent success, I decided that I was not going to count on the sangria being drinkable, and unceremoniously grabbed carefully brought two random flavors out of the box, to spend some time in my work fridge before bash.

After being advised by Gaff himself that not having yet watched Blade Runner was a Fault, I asked around a bit about who else might be interested in a movie night. And it turned out that the Dean was interested in making it happen. Plus he knows which meeting room has the best sound system.

In search of some better information than those punks at the helpdesk were capable of giving me, I tried googling some of the information I wanted to know about the helpdesk software. This turned up the manufacturer's wiki. Read more... )

Sadly, the first date that the Dean proposed for Blade Runner Night is up against something else. He's thinking again about it.

The beer bashes are often themed. Today's beer bash was themed for that SaaS upgrade initiative. The name, of course, has nothing apparent in common with the actual effects. We wandered out to find that there were piles and piles of branded bottle openers on all the tables. Sort of nicely themed for a beer bash, but we actually don't have beer bottles at the beer bash (having long since reached the keg stage) so it all seemed a little futile. I grabbed some nachos and sat primly down at an "I don't know you personally but I'm sort of with your group at lunch and we nod and say hi in the halls" distance from some of Purple's teammates. There was a band, but they weren't amplified past hear-myself-think stage.

Purple and lb emerged and spotted me. They went after refreshments. As I sat there waiting, I saw the Dean. I had been mulling over a few more thoughts, and felt I should share. So I headed over to where he was, and pitched: "You Haven't Seen This Yet?!?!!" -- the movie night series. Just then Purple showed up over one shoulder and lb showed up over the other, for all the world like an angel and a devil. (Purple gives me the bad ideas, so he was appropriately on my left.) Read more... )

Purple's rule for me has become an in-joke: No more blowing bees in the courtyard! (It was not that I was previously actually allowed to blow bees in any location, courtyard included, but that now there has to be a specific rule about it.)

lb likes to program language games. And "no more" "blowing bees" "in the courtyard" has somewhat the same ring of "Brad" "with BML" "in his dorm room" -- the savour of a really satisfying Clue answer. He's going to toss the idea around in his brain for a bit and see if it's possible to come up with a three-card mix-and-match form of shenanigans which involves a modifier of some sort, an action, and a location, or things that swap in and out well enough.

A navy-blue shape snapped my brain's attention, and I pointed my chin across the party. There was That Security Guard. The guys looked. I moved nearer Purple. lb: "How about that local sports team?" I unwound a little in the presence of trusted friends.

The party cleared out some. The band ceased performing and began to clean up. Things got more quiet.

Everybody had been playing with the piles of bottle openers from the start. Purple stared at the stack on our table, and aired a thought which had clearly been nagging at him all evening: WTF does a person in today's world need with that many bottle openers anyway; are there really THAT MANY BOTTLES TO OPEN IN THIS MODERN WORLD??!!?

-- And because sometimes life is just really that great and presents opportunities that great, I reach my hand in my tote bag and slam a hard hard lemonade down on the table in front of him. Everybody cracks up.

lb: "I don't drink things I can't screw off with my hand."

Azz: "In the courtyard." (again with the laughter)

Purple reads the bottle: "HARD Blood Orange", and that reminds lb of a certain Japanese celebrity. Pro wrestling characters are wacky and arguably embarrassment-squick when doing Reality TV Stunts in every culture! ~Hoooooo!!!!

Eventually it was time to go. Purple stopped by my cube and we headed for the parking lot. This time the chatter was mostly about our respective levels of general functionality in the morning, with bonus Shawn trauma )

I now know what I want to be for Halloween. This is a change from the previous several years, where it was a last-minute effort. This one is going to involve a shawl, a necklace, a hat, and a whole bunch of white buttons.
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
The switch in my head is not in the position that I previously put it. This is not optimal.

Things are returning to, if not normal, than at least sensible, with the return of my manager. She simultaneously creates motion and stability. She is our rudder. She is also simultaneously trying to be both herself and my grandmanager, because he is out sick and basically won't be back until November. (I don't have details.)

Today I sent a bug report to Office Depot, about their website. It's just a corner case, and technically it's already being caught by their thingies, but it could be handled better.

Read more... )

Today is my virtual nephew's birthday. Congratulations, dude!


It's starting to feel like fall, which means I'm starting to feel acutely alive again.


Purple still has his beard. I am pleased. I attempted to explain the current state of my brain. I am moderately faceblind: it takes me a certain amount of concerted study to learn someone's face (and match that face with a name). Read more... )


There was some disagreement about whether the TV/monitor belonging to my department and plugged into a dubiously tethered Mac Mini is a bigscreen or not. My line for "bigscreen" is, of a flatscreen, whether or not I can reasonably carry it by myself. I cannot with this. So even though it is only 37 usable inches, I think it big. Everything I can carry is small. I don't have a "medium" range. Purple, with his "60 inches of fun" tv, disagrees with me. :-P


I brought up the matter of the nightshift security guard who had alarmed me by greeting me with "hey, beautiful" two weeks ago at my 1:1 with my manager. She immediately went facepalm-equivalent. Having talked it out some previously, I went on to detail that an engineer or someone doing this, I would feel much more comfortable about going "hey, handsome", or "no thank you". But in the case of a security guard, exactly who you gonna call?

I mentioned in #cupcake; lb evidenced relief. Purple sent me a vaguely baffled PM. He trusted that the security guard factor made it worse because I said it was, but he still didn't understand why.

We talked about it for a while. For me, the horror strikes at the "Who you gonna call?" moment. There were, I said, a lot of different shades of discomfort. (And simultaneously, Purple and I both arrived at the number 50 just out of the grey blue, though he was the first to say it. Bonding moment over our terrible, terrible senses of humor.) Read more... )


Later, there was a conversational reason to mention power dynamics, and Purple mentioned that some people discovered that they had a kink for same (having observed some of the people he knew saying "ugh power dynamics bad" and then ...) and I mentioned that this was one of the factors in my thing for Shawn. "But that would mean that you ... looked up to him?" Purple said in deep bafflement. And a new take on the air taser incident. )

From there we digressed into my dad's taser binder, and his dad's acid-tipped darts. These men should never meet.


I realized I should probably hit the restroom before hitting the road. (Insert digression about fruitless hobbies involving punching the wrong things.) When I came back out, Purple was milling around my team's lobby like an aimless pinball, and the drawer adjacent to the big uncomfortably large to move by yourself screen (currently showing the Non-Boring Manager's choice, our standards page) was a little more ajar than I'd left it.

"Fuck single-sign-on," Purple declared, and began to castigate the new helpdesk software in stronger terms than I'd heard him complain about it previously. It was terrible! You had to sign in to even see the front page!

I looked at the monitor, looked back at him, and began to snicker.

"You'd have to leave yourself signed in if you wanted to leave it up there!" he complained. "You could at least go to the front page on the old one!"

Dear sweet Purple. I went over, fiddled about with the keyboard a little, and re-arranged things so the drawer would close better. (And if my fingers happened to hit command-T, http://[oldhelpdesk.dept.virtualhammer.biz], enter while I was fumbling about with it, well, that was just an unfortunate coincidence, eh? How clumsy of me.)
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
Read more... )
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azurelunatic: AO3 rating glyph: Explicit, Multi-relationships, choose not to warn, unfinished.  (how is this my life)
11:14 Wednesday, 10 September, 2014
So far as I know, there is no viable user-facing tool which tells a regular worker at my workplace who the manager of a particular person had been, after that person has left.

01:32 Thursday, 11 September, 2014

Guest speaker day!

Had a slightly contentious conversation with someone from helpdesk (I suspect that he's a goon from the helpdesk software place, not an actual internal helpdesk worker) about the behavior of the This Shit Got CC:ed To Me sub-tab. I say sub-tab, because it's a tab within a tab, and my tolerance for whatever fancy-ass website shenanigans they have going on all up in that bad boy is dropping by the day. This is the horrible fucking front end they've got put on it all special-like for us.

First I had to argue him out of his misconception that the page refreshed when you clicked the CC: tab. It does not. I explained steps to prove that it did not (steps which I had already included in the ticket). "Do you have dev server access?" he asked me hopefully. I did not. He went and did the thing and came back to explain to me that no actually, the contents of the CC: tab were cached until you refreshed the page. WHICH WAS THE POINT WHICH I WAS TRYING TO CONVEY TO HIM.

I explained that my demand was that clicking on the CC: tab should refresh the goddamn contents of the page like any sensible fucking designer would do. He had further questions, but those had to be put on hold until later as I had "a 4pm meeting".

In the gym. With a few hundred other co-workers, some of whom were in full BSG flight suits. I queued up for refreshments, and spotted my friend the admin who'd been on the other end of the lab shenanigans, who spotted me. He came over and gave me a hug and asked whether I was the one who'd left chocolate on his desk. Indeed I was. Read more... )

There was no time for the second audience question after that, but that was a deeply satisfying story. Mr. Sub-tle wrapped him up, and we gave him a standing ovation.

Mr. Sub-tle made some administrative announcements, and then Mr. Olmos had a few last words. If you have never been part of a crowd caught up by strong emotion, it is quite a thing. "So say we all!" he concluded.
"So say we all!" we chanted back.
"So say we all!" he called.
"So say we all!"
"SO SAY WE ALL!"
"SO SAY WE ALL!!!!!"

Mr. Sub-tle called the backstage pass people together, and we began streaming out the door. All throughout, I had been wondering if there were a better recipient. It wasn't that I was opposed to participating in the meet-and-greet, but I figured if there were someone who would appreciate it more, then it should go to them.

It so happened that one of our former teammates had come along with his wife (currently on staff in another department) to this. He is one of the guys for whom the "no major workplace events during a geek magnet special event" rule had been put in place. And he was watching the trail of backstage people wistfully. I knew what I had to do.

Later, Rocky stopped by my cube and told me that it was really nice what I'd done; someone else had been one of the aisle people and had given their button to Rocky's daughter, who got to go back as well. Yay! We had a great chat about classic SF (in which I avoided saying "I just love Dick!") and drinking from the flamethrower (about a work product, the new helpdesk software, and LJ).


Since I have to see Blade Runner fairly soon to renew my geek card *grin*, I knew I'd need to get the current top of my stack popped. So I settled down with the laundry that needed sorting and popped Donnie Darko into the DVD player. That is a weird movie, yep. I am sure that Purple will tease me for taking three months to watch it. I will point out that it is not quite three.
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
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azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
Monday: Purple was mentioning some of the weekend shenanigans, including CAH and something where the random draw represented for me, I think something that obscenely involved bees. I mentioned that if they were again hard up for an extra for CAH shenanigans, I might possibly be awake. (Insert discussion about the amount of driving at that hour, just for a little silliness. "I might be awake," I repeated, a placeholder serving handily for "if my presence would be welcomed, I can decide for myself whether the effort involved is worth it." Purple has clearly concluded that I am a lunatic for even considering the concept.)

Tuesday: Poor Lennon Glasses Guy got driven inside to finish his lunch because of the marauding wasp, then came back to finish out the lunch hour with the crew. Purple and I were the last ones at the table, and the wasp came back, buzzing around his mostly empty plate. I watched it narrowly, waiting for it to step wrong.

Cut for arachnophobes. )

I was torn between happily watching Purple gaze fondly at his new outdoor pet, warily watching the yellowjacket lick Purple's plate, and the new Toby book.


I confirmed that the lab equipment seems to be intact. My manager will get the door code tomorrow. I printed up labels: [Department] Research Lab. [Department] Research Observation Room. Manager: [Manager] Scheduling: [Azure Lunatic]. I dropped some chocolate-based diplomacy on the desk of the guy who I felt needed it. (The haulin' stuff guys will also need some, I feel.)
azurelunatic: "So after we shot up the police station and set the habitat on fire, what did we do for an encore?"  (encore)
I think I'm not imagining this character. At least, I hope I'm not. I think he's from a Gordon Korman book. He's somewhere from his late 40s to very vigorous 60s. He's slender and moderately tall, a white dude with a leathery face full of smile wrinkles, with a Vonnegut-esque head full of curly hair shot through with white, though perhaps not quite as bushy. He keeps his head cocked to the side as if listening to a Call to Adventure that few can hear. At a crucial moment, he is ready to burst forth with some sort of Fuck Tha Man shenanigans.

Is he Gramps?
Is he somebody else?

I hope he exists, because I work with his doppelganger. We traded information on the helpdesk software and just how badly it sucks.

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9/9/14 12:03
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
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azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)
Got to chat with Darkside on Sunday. Yay! He expressed dubious growliness at the idea that the security guard would be providing advances while on duty, and made various terrible bee-related jokes given the setup of blowing the wasp at Purple. Since Darkside turns out to be one of my more clean-minded friends, this is particularly fun. (He's not actually clean-minded. This is just comparatively.)

I felt a switch in my head go click as I was talking to Purple on Thursday night. I don't know if it's a particularly decisive switch, but it's something different. So I wanted to at least write that down, to see where my brain went after.

One of the things that will eat my brain if I'm not careful, is that Darkside and Purple have the same given name. Darkside is the best $NAME most of the time, but Purple gets to be the best for little bits, about fifteen minutes at a time, generally connected to when he's said something that's a particularly heinous pun. So Darkside asked whether Purple was a good $NAME. "Yes," I said fondly. "Good. Tell him he get cookie." So I emailed Purple, giggling all the while.

Entirely coincidentally, when I came in to work today, there was a small tub of cookies on my desk. I recognized the container, and thanked my Overlady once I saw she was off the phone (much to the surreal confusion of the Hipster Researcher).

There's an ongoing situation at work which I've been keeping my eye on; that seems to be well on its way to resolution today.

Helpdesk shenanigans continue to shenan. I will offer this commentary. How much about email do you know?

Multipart email comes in more than one section. Often there are two sections: text/plain and text/html. The text/html section is the one with the fancy markup and clickable links. The text/plain section is for the benefit of mail readers who don't do all that newfangled stuff.

The text/plain section is supposed to have a copy of any URLs included in the text/html section. That's correct, helpdesk, you aren't generally able to click on them (aside from those plain text mail readers which recognize the http:// or https:// bit and do the smart thing). The expected use case for URLs in the text/plain section is for the user to copy them and paste them into her browser.

IF ALL YOU HAVE IS THE INCIDENT NUMBER, THAT DOES JACK-ALL WHEN PASTING INTO THE BROWSER.

My manager is always relieved to note when incidents involving me shouting at helpdesk conclude without me having actually sworn at helpdesk. After all, some people's capslock keys do occasionally get stuck.


The guys (well, R, and then the guys in #cupcake followed suit) decided that it was milkshake o'clock. So they (minus phone) congregated in front of my cube. Mr. Zune noticed the cookies on the collaboration table. Purple suggested that they had been made with poison. I said that I knew the provenance of the cookies, but cannily did not vouch for their safety. Mr. Zune decided against a cookie at that time. The conversation carried us a good portion of the way over to R's cube. She was missing, having gone upstairs to collect her non-broken new computer. (Purple: If I get punched for saying terrible things, I'm going to be pretty sore.) (Good luck that when the fist stays a foot away.)

My Overlady was visible in the secret milkshake dungeon; I invited her to join our party, but she was waiting on a teammate for coffee.

Among the random stories was that time when Mama's best friend was visiting, and the ladies were talking child rearing woes downstairs, while Tay and I played with her best friend's very small (well, five-ish) and autistic son upstairs.

Now, one of the features of the house was that it is mostly two big rooms -- at the time there was the big room downstairs, plus the bathroom and the pantry tucked behind the interior wall of the bathroom -- and then the upstairs, and at some point my little room off in the corner there. The acoustics were fabulous -- if it was said downstairs, it was clearly audible upstairs.

Tay and I, by unspoken agreement, had never mentioned this fact to our parents. Since generally they were the only ones talking quietly downstairs when we were upstairs, and we were rarely trying to be quiet downstairs while they were trying to sleep, they had never cottoned on.

Mama's best friend began to unload her heart about how very hard it was to have a shattering marriage and nearly sole responsibility for an autistic kid.

Tay and I looked at each other. The little guy might have all sorts of things going on, but we knew there was nothing wrong with his hearing, and it was obvious that he was hearing every word. I scrammed downstairs and urgently but quietly informed Mama and her best friend that due to this one weird trick with acoustics, every word they were saying was broadcast upstairs in full clarity. Where the little guy was.

This was news to Mama, and she clearly had many questions about what exactly we had heard over the years of her thinking she was having fully private conversations with FatherSir, but this was not the moment to air these questions. This was the moment to take the tea outside, where they could have a real private talk.

#cupcake is rowdy under the best of circumstances. I'm not sure what our teammate made of us. My Overlady is long accustomed to people around me being loud and weird.


Purple realized that he has not shaved in a while. I mentioned that his moustache was coming in nicely. He's not sure whether he'll be keeping it or not.

I learned a lot more about the various dynamics of Purple's HOA board than I was really intending to learn.

Purple got a cookie out of my little tub. I assured him that it was not poison. He cheerfully accepted the cookie, because he knows that if I've deemed a cookie not poison, it does not have lurking walnuts, which many otherwise sensible people like to put in chocolate chip cookies, rendering them inedible for those of us with walnut allergies.

I had been wrong by an hour about the closing time of Borderlands. Woops. Alas. No The Winter Long for me tonight. Alas. Purple was sympathetic.

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Azure Jane Lunatic (Azz - bolt of blue - infovore)

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