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I failed Hallowe’en

As fine a pumpkin as I’ve ever had and did I carve it? I did not.

I kept putting it off until today, then we got home just as it was getting dark. Poop. Just to rub it in, we passed tons of beautifully carved pumpkins all the way home. There was one house with, like, eight on the porch.

I’m still going to put it out at the end of the drive tomorrow. Believe it or not, I’ve been doing that for years and nobody’s ever pulled over and drop kicked it up the house.

I wonder if an uncarved pumpkin will last more or less long than a carved one?

Happy Hallowe’en everyone!

October 31, 2023 — 7:23 pm
Comments: 11

I am damp and grumpy

Let me spare you the suspense: the weather here looks like that forever.

On Thursday, for variety, we’re getting the remnants of Storm Ciarán. High wind and heavy rain. This comes on the heels of Storm Babet (pdf file).

Yes, odd storm names. They’ve only been naming storms for not quite ten years here. Another infernal Yankee impertinence. Our storm names are decided jointly between the Irish, the British and the Dutch, so you’d expect some loo-loos.

Note that if we make it all the way to T, we get Storm Tamiko. I guess she immigrated.

Americans have been naming storms since the 50s. If you want a preview of what you’ve got to look forward to, here you go.

Sadly for Sheila Jackson Lee, I do not see “Keisha, Jamal and Deshawn.”

October 30, 2023 — 5:32 pm
Comments: 4

Oh, swell

When I tried to shut down my headset this afternoon, it fired up a long firmware upgrade. It updates about every six months. I didn’t think any changes would be immediately apparent, so I looked up the release notes and – whoopee! – Horizon Worlds avatars will now HAVE LEGS.

That’s those guys up there. I’ve said it before, a big part of the incredibly low uptake on Zuch’s metaverse is that everything so goddamned ugly. The man has to be face blind.

I’ve only gone to his shared worlds a few times. They’re painfully stupid, too. Bunch of Weebles wobbling around mumbling to each other. What do you say to a lumpy pastel stranger? The occasional kid bumping into someone repeatedly to simulate sex (this got so bad they had to institute adjustable personal boundaries).

Kids. The last thing on the planet earth I want to do is interact with somebody’s children on the computer. Jesus, Zuck.

The ugly isn’t due to hardware limitations. There are restrictions on what you can do, sure, but most of this shit is bad design, plain and simple.

Having delivered myself of this rant, I’m off. Have a good weekend, everyone!

October 27, 2023 — 6:43 pm
Comments: 6

Tense moment

So I’m using my thrusters to float down a corridor coated in pulsating orange biomass while carrying a power cell (those blobby things eat power) and I’m just getting to the part where you have to make a hard right or get a faceplate full of lethal alien goo annnnnnd…the power goes.

Not long. Just long enough to shut everything down. I love Lone Echo, but there’s no manual save and I’m not sure how much of that I’ll have to redo. Am pissy.

Counterpart to yesterday’s Tabasco post, this guy experiments with making Sriracha. Fermented chilis, just like Tabasco, plus garlic (which you will know if you eat Sriracha) but also brown sugar.

I wasn’t aware of the taste of sugar, but then I rarely it it directly. A squirt into a mess of soup does the trick.

October 26, 2023 — 6:31 pm
Comments: 5

First batch

Dehydrated chilis. I put ’em in oil and vinegar dressing all year. Gosh, it takes a lot of time to hot all the water out of them.

Did you know that Tabasco (and Sriracha) are both made from fermented chilis? I didn’t. Coincidentally, I learned that by reading the label of a bottle of sauce on the table in the biker cafe where we had lunch today.

Looked it up when I got home. Tabasco in particular, they chop up the chilis, put them in ex-bourbon barrels, seal them with a layer of salt and leave it for up to three years(!) before adding vinegar and bottling.

I mean, I like Tabasco, but I never thought it tasted all that ‘rich and complex’.

Recipes at that first link, Tabasco deets here. Their own site is kind of boring.

October 25, 2023 — 6:06 pm
Comments: 12

Badgers love baked potatoes, apparently

A badger turned up on the CCTV at work last night. I had a hard time making it out. At first I thought, coon? Not possible. Giant rat? Ewwww, no.

It was kind of small, but I finally made it out by the white stripes. It was an overhead shot, so harder to parse. Kind of amazing that far in town.

This isn’t that badger, though. This from a video called Badgers like jacket potatoes from a channel called Mad Badger Lady.

Many such cases. Very sad.

October 24, 2023 — 6:51 pm
Comments: 10

They took to it

Halloween. Brits never observed it, back in the day. They knew we did, but they didn’t.

Like this guy. Not the skeleton; the guy who owns the skeleton. This is a farm shop we sometimes go to. Picture doesn’t do it justice – he has thousands of pumpkins. And dozens of customers for them. Parking lot was rammed.

I’m sure most of them will get ploughed under and turned to mulch, but it was amazing to see so many gourds in one place.

Same place I got my knucklehead pumpkin last year. Same place I saw the big spooder the year before.

I’m sure Uncle B still thinks it’s an infernal American cheek, or some such British harumph.

October 23, 2023 — 7:14 pm
Comments: 6


Doctor gave me some meds today. I’m a bit nonplussed. That’s some kind of wide symptom range.

No, I didn’t go to the doctor about my little episode, though I’m still not feeling 100%. I had a longstanding appointment for a meds check (blood pressure) and so he could fuss at me about my cholesterol again.

I ain’t taking statins. There must be a note to that effect in my charts, because he just sighed and nodded.

Okay, you can have the anxiety, but could I keep a little schizophrenia?

Have a good weekend, y’all.

October 20, 2023 — 5:51 pm
Comments: 13

Bring it up again and we’ll vote on it

Ewww…I threw up, y’all! I was sitting still reading and suddenly felt scary dizzy, managed to stagger to the loo, and donated my lunch.

I don’t do this. I’m bulletproof. It’s got to be food poisoning, but…

I had avocado toast, strawberry yoghurt and a glass of tea for lunch. Who the hell gets food poisoning from a vegetable?

More or less okay now, but shaky. Weasel won’t be down for dinner.

October 19, 2023 — 7:11 pm
Comments: 8

Well, have you?

I’ll keep it short and sweet tonight – we’re having a windstorm and electricity might be dodgy. Have you tried this stuff? Did it do anything for you?

I first bought some years ago when a friend swore up and down it was a miracle for her dog’s arthritis. I had a crunky old cat that I would have done anything to ease out gently, so I gritted my teeth and bought some. It didn’t seem to do anything for her and she so hated having her mouth pried open, I gave up.

I’ve recently tried again – errr…not with a cat, she’s long gone – hoping it would help my stiffening hands. I’m…not sure. I’ve seen a real improvement in my hands, but I also started a fish oil regimen at the same time. I’m an incredibly bad scientist.

The price is eye-watering. Does that mean it must be effective or people wouldn’t pay that much, or does it mean I’m an absolute mug to pay that much when I’m not even sure what it’s doing? I hate feeling like an absolute mug.

Fair’s fair…I stole the illustration from here.

October 18, 2023 — 7:30 pm
Comments: 11