jinian: (worms' meat)
Yesterday:
17:10 cats land in Boston as air cargo
18:00 cats arrive at home and disperse themselves invisibly into the apartment while i refuel and return the Zipcar
18:30 I return to the apartment and easily find Bat, whose idea of hiding appears to be simply becoming flat while adjacent to an armchair (he later improves on this by wedging himself between the chair and an ottoman); he does not wish to interact
19:00 Squeak begins intermittently living up to her name but cannot be found
19:20 Squeak consents to be discovered and petted, but only in the bathroom; vast puffs of fur emerge from her body
20:30 Squeak happy enough to play with me in the kitchen; Bat still wedged; Diz whereabouts unknown
21:00 Batty amenable to petting, emerges from hole only to be hissed at by Squeak and to emit strategic aromas; litterboxes are used and food is eaten; Diz whereabouts unknown

Today:
00:00 Squeak curled up behind my knees on the couch; Bat eating dry food in my bedroom
??:?? coalescence of Dizzy from the ether to be thoroughly petted; re-evaporation of Dizzy
04:00 Squeak discovers the fine echoing properties of the hallway where my roommates sleep and is forcibly relocated into my room with closed door; as the couch is surprisingly uncomfortable, I accompany her
06:30 after ongoing shenanigans including Bat in and out of the bedroom, I admit that I am awake and get some cereal
7:30 despite grouchy reconfined Squeak, fed Kylee is able to zonk out again
10:00 I awaken with Squeak curled adorably in the small of my back; now that it is daytime and my roommate is awake, she is not whining at all; Bat has burrowed hilariously into the cushions of the armchair; Diz whereabouts unknown
jinian: (Winry kicks ass)
1. Slept and slept! Despite not having a real good bed. Being in my own space is excellent.

2. Cleaned the sublet nicely and dropped off keys for the person I was subletting from.

3. Figured out where to recycle fluorescent bulbs (the hardware store) and did so. Also got some necessary things for the new place.

4. Witnessed the use of a cat back pack! I'm told that the cat does not like the pack but does enjoy bike rides.

5. Fixed the busted shelving so it no longer comes apart and actually looks pretty good. I started by just nailing on the backing, but the front was still loose, so I borrowed a drill and some spare screws and fixed it properly like an awesome person.
jinian: Unikitty from the Lego Movie in business attire (unikitty)
I've been semi-keeping track.

Friday:
1. Got a 30-gallon long tank for the axies, for whenever they arrive. USPS allows shipping of amphibians! Wim kinda wants to keep them for longer, but maybe he should get his own. :)

2. Successful human-management skills! Confusing situation with a lost package, got referred to the mailroom guy, he was like "I dunno" -- and I pulled out "what do you think I should do?" (because I didn't in fact know, but also because he had knowledge and wasn't giving it to me). Fifteen minutes later, problem solved. By him.

Sunday:
1. Lovely outing to thrift store, where I got surprise stompy boots!

2. And surprise backing fabric for the Wim quilt. Wasn't thinking that a red would be in it at all, but it works!

Monday:
1. Nice morning at home and then acupuncture.

2. Pretty girls are outside. One had spots like a dalmatian, which I suppose is considered a disorder of some kind, but it looked beautiful, like stars and galaxies all over her arms.

3. Biodiversity Heritage Library... so pretty...

4. I have a sweater now! First day I've been totally comfortable at work.

5. Super fun time writing an impromptu choose-your-own-adventure story for my racing game people.
jinian: (fft ninja)
1. Promising meeting! Things are moving slowly for this project, but we'll get somewhere cool eventually.

2. Knowledge is power. I'm not happy about it per se, but I finally found out something very important.

3. Mom texted that Squeak cat was playing laser with Dad. :)
jinian: (wtf Martel)
Thursday Seattle things:

listened to Mudhoney playing at the top of the Space Needle on the KEXP song of the day

wild roses and ceanothus on the Burke-Gilman trail

put on flannel and got rained on

Taco del Mar with sweetie

Friday good things:

1. It's Kylee's Day of Zero Dignity with Foodstuffs! Licked the spilled lemon filling, put my mouth over the exploding pink lemonade bottle. :)

2. Keiko got me Esau. So touched.

Saturday? good things:
absolutely fucking died laughing at this
it's the surprise element, something i have seen a million times with a gloss that is snarky as fuck

Monday Seattle things:

Samurai Noodle with grad friend C

sold books at Twice Sold (ballard one = old u district one, the same guy!)

Wednesday Seattle things:

EJ Burger, the best chocolate milkshakes in town!

Hana with Marie and Wim (including rained on, driving to Cap Hill because we're sure parking will exist on Wed night, paying for parking because it does not)

Thursday/Friday:

Dinner at Tup Tim Thai! Fun waiter was still fun, though we only saw him briefly this time.

OMG got cats moved. Hilarious. Not the best night's sleep ever. :) Every half hour or so Squeak would have to hiss again (at Bat, at my hand, at the existence of the room which was unfamiliar and thus offensive), and I would try to block her from whatever was pissing her off.

Still finding new places to walk in my neighborhood. Found gorgeous honeysuckle on two trellises, smelling sweet and golden as they looked, a few days ago. This morning, a turquoise house with turquoise-and-blue-checkered door.

So so tired and feeling regretful and panicky. Mover coming this morning at 10. I will prevail!
jinian: Unikitty from the Lego Movie in business attire (unikitty)
1. Playing "what is on this CD?" as I clean and start to actually pack boxes a little bit. Today I found a Christmas music mix marked only "2004" -- okay!

2. Stressball girl collapsed on the bed with cats for a bit, with pants undone because I don't know, I was partway through taking them off, and Diz cat decided to not just snuggle but start licking my tummy. Laughed and laughed.

3. I put things into a box for moving today. And other things into bags for going away forever.

4. Watched Labyrinth with an online friend! I like this watching things in chat with people, I haven't done it until the last month or so and it's quite good as a way to hang out with someone who's not nearby.
jinian: (bold bananas)
Fellowship application is still pending. Anything you're imagining right for for what my face looks like regarding this issue is probably accurate in some measure.

1. Girls are pretty.

2. I workworkworked this morning and felt crappy... so I came home and took a nap.

3. Watched Totoro and made weird boiled cookies of my childhood.

4. Hachiko axolotl is getting big! I showed pics of her off to some friends elsenet today. :)
jinian: (garden yukito)
This is a post about the wee axolotl Hachiko! She remains wee because of not having eaten at all for months. Her triumphant return to the up-above room-temperature world was accomplished a couple of days ago, after literally months of spending time in the axolotl equivalent of the hospital: the refrigerator.

Axies sometimes get fungal growths. Usually it's because of injuries or poor water quality: like most amphibians, they have a nice slime layer that keeps bad stuff off them for the most part, and it's when that's broken or degraded that they can get in trouble. The fungus is something that's in the environment all the time, and they usually aren't bothered. So, shortly after last fall's warm weather, which isn't really good for them, Hachi had gotten a little fungus in her gills that would go away and come back, and she wasn't growing well or seeming very energetic. The first method for fixing that problem is to give salt baths. It proved very tough to catch her from her tank for doing that, and the treatment wasn't very successful, so I went to the worrisome fridging option within a couple of weeks.

I kept giving salt baths for a couple of months while she was in there, but the fungus would go away and come back just like it had before, even when I eventually raised the concentration enough that I was worried about harming Hachi with it. (Amphibians don't like salt either, but it's like chemotherapy: the idea is that the disease likes it a lot less.) So I decided to quit with the salt and just keep her in the fridge... and she got better. It was very weird to keep changing her water every day and have her fairly active but refusing to eat. Truly, other forms of life are fascinating. Anyway, she hasn't had a recurrence in weeks, so I am cautiously moving her back to room temp.

Now Hachiko is back in her 10-gallon tank and eating food pellets whenever they're offered. Hopefully we can get her fed up big enough to go into the larger tank with Hex someday -- I look forward to the cuteness multiplier, but she's still so little that an accidental bite could do her real damage, so she needs to bulk up first!

In other axolotl news: there's new evidence for the hypothesis that they're extinct in the wild, alas. At least it reminded me to make this:

Hex with hipster glasses shopped on, with text: I'm from Lake Xochimilco; you've probably never heard of it

(I can't remember the other Hipster Axolotl joke we were making like nine months ago when I took the photo, though. Wim?)
jinian: (c'est la vie)
1. Felt well enough to walk to school and was promptly rewarded by meeting the neighbors' new puppy! He's a little golden-lab-like guy with swoopy white markings, very pretty and sweet. He looks a bit like tiny Mr. Tadakichi. (yes Wim I do want my own Mr. Tadakichi, I do not see what is wrong with that)

2. My dad called to check up on my cold, because he was concerned maybe I couldn't cook for myself and he would bring me a hamburger or something. Aw. I managed to tell him that the dog he had trained to be a horrible little brat was a good dog when he said he missed her, which I hadn't been able to bring myself to, but hey, she did what he wanted, she was a good dog.

3. I finally got myself psyched up about the project I've been hatefully and foolishly postponing and now feel fairly good about it, except for the part where I should've done today's stuff three weeks ago. Oops. Will do now!

4. Full misty lovely moon.

5. First iteration of hilarious money tricks to improve one's credit: borrow against the line of credit and pay it back the same day. No interest accrues, and people examining reports will only see that a payment was made that month. (Well, they also see that you didn't borrow the full amount, which is another good thing; one should always leave 40-50% of available lending untouched for optimal effect, according to the wise credit union lady I consulted.)
jinian: (c'est la vie)
Sunday:
There was a faux chestnut in the pizza place harvest display, all silly green-plastic spines. Wim and I were both delighted.

Tuesday:
1. Felt better about going to family Thanksgiving. (Failing actually interacting better, I have the new 3DS Zelda game.)

2. Painted fabric looking good for baby square of doom.

3. Thai noodles and Leverage with Wim making us both feel better.

4. Email with [personal profile] rushthatspeaks and very important Lucien cat.

Wednesday:
1. Moderately intelligent cloning scheme generated by me!

2. Finished painting some very pretty coral, set the dye, and (this is critical) decided not to screw up my fingers and brain trying to finish the whole thing tonight.

3. Played Rock Band with my new drum pedal, which I had to buy on eBay since somehow the Goodwill only has the main drum-kit parts. Fun! Hilarious to observe myself failing to control my own foot!
jinian: (lost sakura)
1. Resting when sick is a good idea and feels relatively good. Also, it allows a person to play Long Live the Queen several times.

2. Going to the doctor is virtuous, and I got to see the RN I like. Not excited about taking a bunch of doxycycline, but looking forward to not having a horror show in my head and throat.

3. And I still got some work done, though I was too stupid to write. (I claim this word: I am in a literal semi-stupor.)

4. Hachiko-axolotl is totally fine at 4 degrees C, and shedding fungus like a tiny sluggish boss.

5. Set myself up a chore rota. Decided to my satisfaction (1) that it's still a rota even if it's one-dimensional and (2) that the trivial case of a rota would be one person doing the same thing every day. Mondays are now mending days, and I tightened buttonholes on the duvet cover with the red poppies.
jinian: (bachelor's button bud)
1. Animal guessing game: super lucky cat. Among the first few questions: DOES IT RAISE A PAW. I don't know how I kept a straight face. This was the best thing that happened all week.

2. Awesome skeptical feedback on my proposal! I almost wish I hadn't made it all pretty first, but this way I got to have a "feeling really good about it" stage AND a "yay someone ripped into it where it needed ripping" stage, so it was actually good. (The NSF is back at work but is kinda telling us to fuck off while they regroup, which is fair.)

3. Watched BIG ASS SPIDER! with Wim. Exactly a ridiculous monster B-movie. Very pleased. Also, that was definitely 100% ironic racism, and it was still not okay, so, nice to have that experience for sure I guess.

4. Fun outing with some parents-out-law, to lunch and the lab and the university's phenomenal greenhouse. These things by themselves would've been enough, but our luck was in and the greenhouse manager was there. He opened the terrarium and fed the poison-dart frogs so they'd come up and be photographed, and we got to hang out with the praying mantis too.

5. As I told the cats earlier tonight, I do like doing things that are right, and taking the laundry down from the ceiling fan is pretty indisputably right.

6. I have passed a strange sort of milestone in axolotl ownership: Hachiko is currently in the fridge to recover from her chronic fungus problem. I'm VERY NERVOUS about this because it doesn't seem like the kind of thing one should do to a pet ever, but it's the standard of axolotl care if they're not getting better readily.

axolotl mug

Oct. 6th, 2013 10:40 pm
jinian: (black and white)
Alas, no pottery this term. Too busy with fellowship application right now, and if I travel for any interviews -- though I still don't know the etiquette for interviewing elsewhere if I'm applying for fellowships with someone -- I'd miss even more classes. Also, no money!

Still a few things I'm very pleased with from last term, though. I finally learned to make mugs. Basically they're cylinders, which means they have flat bottoms, rather than bowls, which have rounded bottoms. (That doesn't mean you can't distort things to make the sides more interesting; that's very much encouraged.) The thing that makes a mug, though, is of course the handle, and I hadn't learned to pull handles until last term. Here are three mugs I made the day I learned it -- the bodies were thrown the week before and had dried out a bit, and then handles just attached.



Bonus studio view in that one. The mug at left lives with Wim now, the one at right was damaged by someone else's carelessness and I couldn't rescue it, and the center one we will follow to the next step. I drew a design on it with a stylus while it was still leather-hard, and sent it off to be bisqued.

After bisque firing, I filled in the axolotl face design using black underglaze. You can see where I sketched in the oval of the face in the clay if you look at the bases of the gill-fronds on the right. I figured such small depressions wouldn't show after glazing. After filling it in, of course, is when I thought of the fact that it's the more dorsal gills that are longer, at least on Hex and Hachi. Oops.



Then I glazed it with clear, sent it off for firing, and crossed my fingers.



It came out great! I haven't figured out why sometimes lately the clear glaze has had a yellow cast in places, but it doesn't look too bad. The mug is a fine size for a cup of tea, which I should go have another one of now to help my throat.
jinian: (clow reads)
1. Three-headed cat beast on the couch when I got up this morning! They are so contentious all the time, but sometimes when I'm not around they forget to (pretend to) hate each other.

2. I like making 140-character tweets, especially when they're this one:
I am MIGHTY: sender of proposal draft, requester of recommendation letter, user of Google cache to dig up NSF web pages. Now it's lunchtime.


3. And then I took myself out for a delicious burger and milkshake, and I ate them while sitting on the grass in the sun and reading a novel.

4. Okay, Savage Lovecast, you win. Talking about clothes AND sex, with the clothes only available in the premium version, will in fact get me to spend a dollar on your podcast. Keep it up!

5. My submission to Mansplained is up! (One person already found it, I see.) This was by far the worst of our bad interviews. Very glad we have two good lab managers now.
jinian: (capybara)
1. Chill time with cats and music and puzzles.

2. Matte top coat for nails! Expect the renaissance of the highway manicure, now with fog lines that don't wash off with water.

3. FAIR. Five-day-old piglets! Pygmy goats! Collections! Quilts! (There was this one quilt based on Just the Ticket pattern that really looked like razor blades. I think I can resist my tasteless parodic impulse. Maybe.)

4. Someone at the fair had a Super Calvinball shirt that made me really happy.

5. UMBRELLA OF COMPERSION.
jinian: (c'est la vie)
Friday grump:

1. Really, body? Yeah, three hours of sleep is AWESOME. Thanks.

2. These are some offensively preppy undergrads.

3. Eek, barky dogs in a lab setting! They were sweet but startling.

Friday happiness:

1. Hilarious playtime with Lucien cat. Is it possible that no one has ever played bed mice with this deprived creature? He absolutely lost it. (I lost it for values of "it" equal to "control over my laughter" and "small amounts of blood.")

2. Oh man, the building I met a prof in today is the one with the brick-carved megafauna all over the top edge. You remember this, Wim? It's so great! Wish I'd brought my camera charger.

3. That was such the best meeting. Lots to consider, she is actually against my doing the thing I want to do, but she is GREAT.

4. Also I totally nailed the fashion aspect of this meeting -- makeup yes, and my cardigan, t-shirt, faded blue jeans ensemble was almost exactly the downmarket twin of her button-down shirt, t-shirt, black jeans ensemble. Not sure about my sandals, but oh well. :)

5. RAIN STORM under an outdoor umbrella on Harvard campus. With wi-fi.
jinian: (birdsquee)
Grad friend M's birthday was a cavalcade of wonders. Bizarre ice-cream taiyaki thing and other mystery snacks, bossing people around, finding someone with a Nintendo-controller messenger bag that matches my Nintendo-controller wallet, floating M. Bison-like above the bodies of my victims, making and distributing ume-shiso rolls, telling someone who really needed to know about the Studio Ghibli museum (and JR Pass, and Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts).

Then I went to work! Okay, work on Sunday night is not usually so great, but this iteration of the experiment was the right way to do it, I documented it appropriately, and I got the other things done that I needed to do.

Then I got the email response I'd been waiting for! THINGS ARE OKAY.

Then there was chicken soup with saltines, and cat time, and music.

Now there is feeding of axolotls, and night chores, and shower, and soon there will be sleep.
jinian: (bachelor's button bud)
1. Got a decent result in one experiment! Reassuring, since I've been putting in a ton of time helping out with this paper but hadn't gotten anything publishable until today...

2. The little Caryopteris that has been so reluctant to grow and bloom for the past two years is looking great this season, deep-blue puffs all over.

3. Good stories.

4. Falling asleep watching Kiki's Delivery Service on the couch with cats.
jinian: (bachelor's button bud)
Yesterday:

1. Really good article with a variety of viewpoints on Golden Rice.

2. Bucko made me laugh and laugh (and cry out, "William S. Broccoli!").

3. Hilariously, "medium-hot" Japanese curry has a just barely detectable spicy aftertaste. Oh, Japanese spice standards. KFC chicken tenders are a pretty good substitute for katsu, though, and Wims can eat the extra-crispy kind!

4. Big Boggle has 50% more blocks. Also "quainter", "secular", other excellence.

5. Quality Rock Band times and sleepover.

There was a considerable hiatus from happiness overnight, though, due to major pain problems.

Today:

1. Good day to be home because LAB DRAMZ are clearly going down, and I was in long enough to finish the things that absolutely needed doing today.

2. Wooooo prescription painkillers!

3. Kitty cat photo shoots.



4. Nerdy adorable comic Daisy Owl is delightful.
jinian: (bold bananas)
1. Talked to my dad on the phone. He says my great-grandma was a secretary to the poet Robert Service for a while, back when they lived in Vancouver, B.C.

2. Mica Angela Hendricks and her daughter made really fantastic portmanteau art together. http://www.themarysue.com/drawing-with-daughter/

3. Furminator Day has yielded the usual mind-boggling results resembling an entire fourth cat.

4. Accomplished all my chores (including the optional playing of Rock Band).

5. Hachiko appears fungus-free! That was easy.

6. Tomorrow is another weekend day!

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