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It's been an eventful couple of weeks. Classes have started again, and my program is still foobar'ed. Trying to get my classes all arranged was sort of stressful. I had to track down a signature saying that CPSC311 can be substituted for ENEL495, which is no long offered. Sort of makes sense that there wouldn't be a data structures course in the electrical program, seeing that we now have separate computer engineering and software engineering programs.

Playing go at Tim Hortons's

A friend of mine and I were sitting in Tim Horton's one night, drinking coffee, eating donuts.... playing go. We've done this once before; in fact we sat at a little table in a corner next to a gaggle of city police who always seem to turn up in Tim's around that time of night. This time, we sat out in the open. We played a game of go, I won, and explained why. We started a second game, and this guy in a shirt and tie comes up and asks who is winning. So I said "well, we just started, so it's a little indeterminate..." I thought he knew the game and was interested.

But no. Not the case. Turns out that Tim Horton's, or at least this particular Tim's, doesn't like its patrons to play games. "We don't have games in here," says the guy in the shirt and tie, "so this is the last game."

I was sort of stunned. I'd like to believe that it threw my concentration and that that's why I lost the game. Or perhaps my friend just made a dramatic improvement.

Whatever. It's private property, so if they don't want people to play games there, so be it. We'll have to find a game friendly cafe to play in from now on. Except there seem to be so few, even with Kensington congested with coffee shops the way it is. It's sometimes hard to find a place that makes good coffee. Good regular coffee; I'm sure they all make fine lattes and what ever, which is what my friend drinks. Good, reasonably priced coffee is especially difficult to come by. Between Booster Juice (smoothies) and lattes, my friend is going to go broke!

Anyway, my friend was really annoyed by this. He's says he is going to bring one of his more confrontational friends in there and play chess or go or whatever until they get kicked out, and then make fun of the suit. My girlfriend is equally pissed, if not more so. I don't really care.

Project breakthrough! True multihead Linux!

Even though I taking mostly 3rd year courses this year, I managed to get into the 4th year design project course, because I do actually have 4th year standing, and because I really wanted to do this multihead Linux project.

We started last April, just after our team for this year (Sept 2001 to April 2002) had solidified. Quick meeting of the team, our sponsor, and our faculty supervisor/adviser. After that we went our separate ways for the summer, and I started doing a bunch of research in to how the Linux console driver worked. By early December we had some overall design and a bit of code. Our first presentation was pretty boring though.

I was sick over Christmas, so I didn't get started until the 29th, but then it went pretty quick. By Dec 31 I had collected a bunch of related data into one common structure, and by Jan 4 or so I had added a new data structure to allow for multiple foreground consoles on multiple frame buffers and the whole nine yards.

The big breakthrough was on Jan 17. That was the first day we were able to log two different users in on two different consoles (where a console is a monitor, keyboard, and mouse), and have X start for both users! Unfortunately, our the second Y for our four head G200 is busted, and the second head is a little flaky (that poor video card apparently took some abuse before it fell into our hands), so we had to run X on framebuffers, which is really slow.

Some more bug fixes, some administration programs, more driver patches, some documentation, and we'll be about done. I'm *really* happy with the progress to date. Hooray!

http://www.multiheadlinux.com/ for anyone who is interested, but it's a pretty bare site for the time being. We haven't opened the forums or anything up to the public, because we want to keep in under wraps until we are finished the project course. Hopefully we will be able to get everyone to agree to make it public shortly.

Climbing

Went climbing on Saturday, to "the pit", which is a three story wall in Kinesiology A (or is it B?). I've been bouldering 3 to 5 times a week since I got back from Christmas, so I feel like I'm improving. The skills were transferring well enough, and I was able to do two (three?) climbs with little effort. So then I lead the sport wall (the previous climbs had been top roped. "Feet on features only" I said, and began to climb. I made to the fifth or sixth clip before I had to start standing on holds. My belayer starts giving me a hard time. Yeah yeah. Features only for feet makes it much more challenging (it's a pretty easy climb otherwise). Anyway, that went well, my partner climbed, and then I started my second ascent. By the time I got to the second clip, my hands were really greasy, due to not having chalked up before I started. Doh!

So I try to get my feet secure on some good features, and reach for the chalk. Now, two clips isn't very high. This is a dynamic rope (of course). It will stretch. I'm straddling the rope. My feet pop off those features. That hurts. Next thing I know, I standing on the ground with the rope almost cutting me in half. Yeah. Actually, it wasn't so bad. I climbed again and took a proper lead fall closer to the top, which sort of freaked me out at first. I was guaranteed a 5 or 10 foot fall at the point, and why let go of a perfectly good hold if you don't have to right? Anyway, it was much better than my first lead fall.

Well, that's enough drivel for one daylog. Thanks for reading!


Oh yes, this weekend I rented the first to Wallace and Gromit shorts. It sorts of sucks to have to pay the full rental price for a 25 min short, but I think Wallace and Gromit are worth it. I absolutly loved the train scene at the end of "The Wrong Trousers!" It was awsome! Gromit picks up a box of infinite track, and starts laying it down in expert fashion all over the house, after getting shot at (thank goodness for that light shade!), and the penguin ending up in the milk bottle was hilarious!!

Also rented The man who knew too much, which I saw the beginning of on late night CBC. Alas, I was to tired to see the whole thing, and didn't have a blank tape on which to record it. It was pretty good as well.


Hey cool, I just discovered that Galeon (Mozilla?) text entry boxes have rudimentry EMACS keys built in!

Ok people! I'm sick and tired of all this and it is time for it to end. I am tired of all the sadness, all of the hate, all of the misery that we seem to so easily work into our lives. The end is now, listen up.

We need to stop this madness.
Revenge does not work.
Jealousy does not work.
Bigotry does not work.
Violence does not work.
Silence does not work.

We all need to reassess the things that displease us, the things that disgust us, the things that we cannot stand, or will not stand, or those things that we simply do not have patience for. Do we really understand the intention of God, or Allah, or Buddha, or whatever else wisdom that presents itself? Do we really listen?

Do any of us realize that we are one in the same, every person and being, and that the interconnectedness of all things guarantees that the whole will not benefit if all of its limbs are dying?

So here it is:
End it now...end the control dramas, end the self obsessions, end the egomania, end the loneliness of the self, end the wars, end the killing, end the self doubt, end the unlove, end the pain, end the suffering, now.

So easy, and yet.....
So hard to let go of the blaming.
This is really all it comes down to:
Have a little respect.

Really, this is just a mindless ramble, trying to remember the conversation.
So I shall make it a daylog. Xenex forgive me.

***

Terry Pratchett, JRR Tolkein, and D&D were influences on this conversation, and the formation of the question.

The question being:
If female dwarves shaved their beards would it be considered kinky?

After a long and twisted debate, we established that Tolkein did not have any female dwarves, so the men must give birth to their own. The question for this should really be "If male dwarves shaved their beards would it be considered kinky?"

(Edited: zerotime: Everyone knows Tolkein's dwarves budded, like sea anenomes.)

D&D had females without beards. I don't really know enough about D&D to write more. Possibly after getting my friends to start a game I could expand on this point, but all I was told was that in a later edition, female dwarves had no beards. So maybe D&D had a kinky side?

Terry Pratchett did the high heeled dwarf thing, with Cherri Littlebottom revolutionising the way Ankh-Morpork dwarven females dressed, although no beards were shawn. So perhaps it would still be kinky if female dwarves shaved their beards?

Maybe they hide their genitals under there?

***

It was a silly conversation, taken quite seriously at the time.
I really want an answer now.
My grandmother appears to be improving. My boyfriend and I visited her in Columbus, Georgia this weekend and she did not cry as much- we joined her for lunch at a fish restaurant she adores and she spoke to us of the many wonderful times she and my grandfather had over the years fishing, vacationing and the like. Things are still tough for her right now, and it feels good when I have the chance to spend time with her. She and my grandfather had 69 good years together- he has passed away, but so many people never get the chance to achieve what they did as a loving, generous couple. They were never looking to make some great impact on the whole world. They just wanted to carry on a good life and have some decent impact on the small community they lived in. They succeeded, and I will always admire and love them.

The editor here at my office may be leaving to persue law in Rhode Island. He asked me the other day if I would be interested in taking his place. It may seem like a great opportunity, and while I’m flattered to be considered next in line, I don’t have much interest at the moment in “moving up.” I am queen of the guilt complex, so I do feel bad about my lack of interest, but I don’t carry much ambition for this job, or much of any other really. This is my primary concern these days: Must find drive. I just have problems dealing with people (I’m no good at it), and my mind and heart would not be in the job of editor. I have no passion for this community (I don’t even live here, I commute) and the editor is required to live here, so if I did take that offer I would have to move. I like where I live. And frankly, this community is whacked.

My interest lies primarily in fiction writing- the book I have been working on may not achieve publication- but at the moment, that’s ok. The world of novel writing is where my goals remain. I will rest, then I will eventually continue to persue. I realize I may be feeding my hermit habit, but how I would love to just be working from home. To not have to deal with this office every day. It’s not all awful, I must say- there are good days and I generally get along with the newsroom staff- but I’m still shy, get flustered when I am stressed, and I’m revolted by the gossip and inane chatter that goes on throughout this place. I should let it go, I know, accept the inevitable cruelties of the environment. But I admit it. I’m sensative. Bury me now. The world breaks everyone.

I’ll move away from this topic. (And blame PMS for the extra dose of neurosis). Phil and I saw “A Beautiful Mind,” yesterday, and I very much enjoyed it. I’m not a big Russell Crowe fan at all, but the movie was well done and he did a nice job. Next movie on my list to see: Gosford Park. We then enjoyed a wonderful Sunday evening in, munching on potato dumplings by candlelight and being beautifully lazy.

I must return to my work day. Avoid the shrapnel from the gossip and all. I should look at it differently- make it a game of sorts. Be like Frogger.

A young woman friend of mine has Multiple Sclerosis. She has know for six months, in which her physical condition has gotten weaker and sicker. I lost touch with her over Christmas break, and I now want to be there for her, when she apparently needs support the most.

Mutual friends fear she won't make it to the summer, I fear the same. She used to go to a private Catholic high school, and she has been forced to drop out because she can not handle the full day. She is in a wheelchair, she cries all the time.

I am infinitely sorry for letting our relationship slip, I am sorry I let her go out of my life, when I needed her, and now I am not there when she needs people the most.

I called her yesterday, It confirmed my worst fears. She is losing the personality that I know her as. She sounds feeble. I have decided that this has gone on long enough. I am forcing myself back into her life, I can not be on the sidelines for this.

This weekend has been full. I got to talk with Quizro online for the first time, and it was really cool to talk to him. We talked about writing and seeking publication, relationships. I decided at that point that I was going to make him a mix tape.

I've had this awful cough for almost a week, but no congestion or other typical cold side effects, which is unusual for me. Friday after work I basically knocked myself out with NyQuil while Ken and Bryan went off to Camilla Grille for a late dinner.

For a while now, I had a small noder dinner planned for Saturday night with local noders, which I was excited about. I like having people over for dinner, even though I have no suitable dining table. When I got up Saturday morning to run some errands in the Quarter, I discovered that my car had been broken into during the night. A small hole had been punched just above the door lock, but since my windows are tinted, the rest of the window was intact; you wouldn't even notice it unless you were looking right at it. I checked inside, and sure enough, my stereo was gone, glove box open, ashtray pulled out. I checked the hatch (which was unlocked if the dumbasses had bothered to check it first) and the electric air pump I had was gone too. I thought to myself that I was thankful I took out my roller blades weeks before. If I had made more of a habit to take the faceplate off the stereo when I got home after work every day, this likely could have been avoided. I've lived in shitty neighborhoods the whole time I've lived here, gone through 3 cars, and this was my first break in, which isn't that bad, considering the odds:

• The stereo didn't cost me anything; it was pulled from a totaled car from the lot at my old job.
• The pump came with the car, and I never used it.
• I found a salvage glass for $40 that day and Bryan was able to install it the next day.
• My registration and insurance wasn't taken.
• My car needed a vacuuming desperately anyway.
• I got a lovely sweet package from panamaus in the mail the day it happened, which made me smile and took my mind off it.
Ted called, which always cheers me up
• Noders responded to one line of text on my homenode with their sympathies.
• We had the dinner that night and had a very nice time hanging out, making fun of SNL.

On Sunday Bryan's folks were coming to get him and all his stuff, so he was taping up boxes and stacking them by the door earlier that morning. Ken showed up to help move boxes and pick up his rice cooker. Over the last few months, so much stuff has been moved in and out of my apartment, I still don't feel like I'm settled. The parents came, gave me a card and a box of candy as a thank you, packed up all Bryan's stuff in their truck and promptly left. Inside the card, his mother had written, "You have a very good heart and thank you for helping Bryan." They had also given me some money, which came in very handy, as I'd drained my savings account to get the glass (which shows you how low that account is, usually), and had no money until 1/31. Once they were gone and I had the place to myself, I felt another bundle of stress leave my body. I will miss Bryan, of course, and I'm sure I will be seeing him again, but it is also nice to have the place to myself again, something I haven't had, really, since this fall and winter began. I played some music and then Ted called. We talked for an hour or so and then I went to church.

Some interesting points about this service. Mike asked us what things made us happy, and how do these things reflect how we looked at the world. My two that I came up with were 1) when I can counter bad things that happen in the moment with good things that happen all the time (i.e. count my blessings, in a way) and 2) when I am part of some collaborative effort with other people to attain a goal (i.e. the dinner I hosted, gatherings, any social activity) and things work out. Then he asked us what things made us angry, and how they reflect our world view. In the case of almost everyone who voiced theirs, the things that made them angry were almost always what people did to them, whereas things that made us happy were more like activities or things not always centered around a person. I offered the idea that people often anger us the most because with anger comes great passion. Humans being so passionate about so many things, we are most likely to stir these sorts of feelings. It was definitely an interesting exercise.

I came back home from church a little nervy, since this would the first night alone in the apartment. As usual, I turned on alternate lights in every room and turned the radio on low. I got online and started talking to my friend Mike, who was at home making 3 bean soup. He invited me over and we hung out and talked while the soup simmered. I watched him walk from stove to kitchen, cleaning each utensil and dish as he used it, moving over things in the fluid, sturdy motion that I've grown accustomed to. It was good to see him and catch up with him. He showed me some new things he'd bought for the house. I had a few beers and tried to get sleepy, but I ended up coughing most of the night when I got home, even with the NyQuil.

So, all in all, a busy and surely interesting weekend that turned out okay in the end, for a change. I am eagerly awaiting this weekend to see Ted and attend the Atlanta gathering.

Not so much milestones as shifts in the pattern, turns in the road. I spoke to my boss today, and we confirmed that I will leave when my contract runs out in february. He thinks that I have been goofing off and surfing the web (that means you, Everything2) instead of getting stuff done lately.

There is some truth in this - my motivation has been suffering due to the growing realisation that even if I was not moving, this is not the place where I want to work in the long term. The facinating learning curve and the thill of going live are over, and I am left with maintainance and observing that I will never really be able to tame the chaos, unprofesionalism and reactive nature of this office.

On the other hand, I don't think that he appreciates the tweaks and tests that have taken up so much time.

I weighed myself today. I am 65kg. I haven't weighed that little in at least five years. this is, in fact my goal weight. I cannot lose any more weight, it's not healthy, so this is as far as that goes.

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