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It's been basically forever since I have posted here. I feel like I am crawling out from under a rock. Only, it's not a rock, it is a GIANT PILE OF FROZEN CRAP. It has been a grueling, hideous year at work, and just when it was starting to settle down, and I thought maybe I could recuperate, read a book, have a life or have some friends over or something, Mother Nature is like "I'll show you CLIMATE CHANGE, you stupid pathetic monkeys." And then she sucked all the winter from the rest of the country and spat it out on top of us.

Tomorrow I have to go back to work, after several days off. I should be rested, but instead, I am utterly exhausted. Why? Because today I raked a roof. With a roof rake what I ordered on Amazon. It took me an hour of cursing just to put the rake together. Then there was help from a neighbor, without which I would not have survived the experience, but it was still pretty rough. However, I am a tiny slightly bit more confident that the roof will not now collapse and crush my housemate while she is attempting to play Dragon Age: Inquisition, in the sunroom. Also, there was shoveling. I am the proud owner of a BILLION MILES OF SNOW. Most of it in my driveway. An inordinate amount, probably more than anyone else's driveway. Also my driveway is ludicrously long. But mainly, I am terrified of going back to work tomorrow, because it means braving the MBTA. It is hard to explain just how bad the public transporation situation has gotten during all of this blizzard-misery.

Last week, when the T was only approaching total collapse, and hadn't yet reached the point where the General Manager of the T and the Governor of the State were using reporters in their respective press conferences to exchange insults, was bad enough. People were stacked up so tightly on platforms I'm surprised birth control wasn't needed, trains were breaking down, catching fire, and occasionally vanishing never to be seen again. Fights were breaking out, and the drop-off/pick-up area of the station were so bad that it's possible I may have thrown a snowball at a car that was endangering lives. (True story, I threw a snowball. Then I hid behind a convenient snow bank).

But it's gotten worse since then. To be point where the GM is frothing at the mouth with hatred for the Gov, and the Gov is staring haughtily down his nose at the GM indicating with every sentence that she's basically incompetent for not being able to resurrect a dead fleet of trains from their frozen graves. The red line broke down so completely that passengers had to walk to the tracks to get back to a station. Still more fires broke out.

Tomorrow, they are theoretically back in service. Only, limited service. And I am taking one of the lines where they won't even admit to how many trains will actually be running, or if they will be running, or how many fires I can expect to encounter on my particular train. Will I ever be heard from again? Frankly, I doubt it.

So here are some final photos.

This one was taken from my neighbors yard, which is high above mine. It's our main exit from the house -- down the deck, which now has snow almost to the top of the rails, through a tiny pathetic path we carved out, over to where [personal profile] mollyamory's car is hiding behind a goddamn snow mountain.

This one is the same deck opposite angle!

And finally, the side of the house, out to the front street. That poor tree is our dogwood. It's not actually a *small tree*.

Yakety Sax was playing in the background

This evening, there was an event that went like this:

Me: *Industriously taking out the trash in the early evening hours, obliviously meandering down my own front path.* When suddenly....
Me: Holy shit! I'm going to run away now!! What do I do with this bag of trash!
Skunk: I'm just an innocent young skunk! Why are you assaulting me!
Skunk: You monster! I can run away FASTER!
Me: Running ridiculously fast to the back door in the hopes of pounding on it and getting [personal profile] mollyamory to let me in.
Skunk: Also running
Me and Skunk: Arriving at the same spot in the back yard from different directions around the house
Me: Running the hell back to the front of the house and back in the front door
Mollyamory: What the hell are you doing?

Kill It With Fire


in this house

a device

is chirping

Agents of SHIELD Tonight

I have been struggling to post, or do anything, lately, so I am struggling up from the depths here to post these spoilery thoughts about tonights ep of Agents of SHIELDCollapse ).

January Meme: Renovations!

From [personal profile] justhuman: I loved the photolog of the kitchen reno - what's the next house project you want to do (whether it's financially feasible or not)?

So, RENOVATIONS.Collapse )

Full list of questions can be found here! Ask me something!

January Meme: New Year's Resolutions

[personal profile] terrio asked: "What are your feelings about New Year's Resolutions? Pro? con? indifferent? baffled? What's the best/worst/silliest you ever heard of?"

I personally haven't had a lot of luck with New Year's Resolutions. There was exactly one year I was wildly successful with my resolutions. I Lost a lot of weight. Got crazy fit with tons of exercise. Felt GREAT. As it turns out, its easy to do this when your job ends and you have nothing else to do but exercise all damn day, and most of this is now all undone because WORK. For the most part, I find the date too arbitrary, and too annoying when you cycle back around and find the thing you resolved to do is still undone.

Some resolutions, I like. Smaller ones. These are like lists for me, and I have to check things off lists, because my brain likes the sense of accomplishment (Yes, it's OCD, I don't care), so they actually get done. But they need to be in smaller bites than "DO THIS WORLD CHANGING MASSIVE THING." Some days, the list has to be "shower, and get to the bus on time. Also don't forget to feed the cats." Because the thing is, New Year's comes at a time of year when the weather is awful and every day when you come home you probably manage to track half a parks worth of snow and grime into the house with you, and the sunlight exists only in a brief tiny window you might see if you go out for lunch, and the end of this nonsense is months away. This is an unreasonable time of year to resolve to do anything other survive the icepack without having to eat your roommate when it is just too much trouble to dig out a car one more damn time so you can go to the grocery snore.

Full list of Questions here, lots of spots left, ask me something!

This Christmas, I am grateful...

...as I am, with every major holiday that requires the preparation of a Large Bird for Eating... for Alton Brown's How to Truss a Turkey video.

Seriously don't know how anyone ever managed turkey bondage before the man came along to save us from ourselves.
Okay! So, I'm doing the thing! I really couldn't do it in December, which is when it seemed like all the action was, but, gonna give it a shot for January! (Will I succeed though? I DUNNO SEEMS SCARY)

So, um. Ask me questions?


01: [personal profile] terrio: What are your feelings about New Year's Resolutions? Pro? con? indifferent? baffled? What's the best/worst/silliest you ever heard of?

02: [personal profile] justhuman: I loved the photolog of the kitchen reno - what's the next house project you want to do (whether it's financially feasible or not)?

03: [personal profile] misspamela: I've been asking this one to everyone and I love everyone's answers! Best book (or books) you read in 2013?

04: [personal profile] mollyamory: What's your favorite thing about yourself?

06: [personal profile] arduinna: Grimm! What do you love, and why do you love it?

07: [personal profile] james: If you could download a skill into your brain, what would it be and why?

10: [personal profile] dorinda: Tell me things about Haven! Thoughts? Hopes, dreams, wishes? Favorite Trouble? Favorite characters? Do you ship it? Would you invite Audrey to your birthday party? Beard on Dwight, y/n? Should they have waxed Nathan's chest?

11: [personal profile] par_avion: What were the vids you loved before you started vidding? Does being a vidder make you think differently about other people's vids / as a vidwatcher?
13: [personal profile] cesperanza: You and [personal profile] arduinna have always been the most amazing pimps for me: DZ, POI, Fringe. What should I be fannish about that I'm not (since you know me better than I know myself!)

15: [profile] gwyn_r: Oh noes, you're going to be stranded on a desert isle soon -- quick, what are your 3 desert isle TV episodes, CDs, books, and movies?
28: No questions this day. Reserved for STUFF.

Wired (the Cylon edition?)

When we updated the kitchen and heating system this summer, we added a second Nest Thermostat upstairs. Then we (okay I) spent too much time playing around with setting up the schedule, and checking on it from a distance via the app, and whatnot.

Earlier this week, the three Nest Protects (smoke detector/carbon monoxide detector combos) I had ordered a couple months ago finally arrived. The carbon monoxide detectors we had in the house all died over the last year, so the arrival of this product was nicely timed for us, since it meant we could rip out the now ridiculously old smoke detectors, and combine them into one device.

So, [personal profile] arduinna came over earlier today to help me with the setup and climbing of ladders and drilling and screwing and whatnot, and we got them up. The result is fascinating.

And slightly creepy.

First, I purchased the black model. This tends to me my first instinct with almost any electronic purchase, but in this one instance, I'm thinking perhaps I should have stuck with the boring normal default white color that most smoke detectors are. We had to relocate them a bit, and as a result, they are a bit more obvious than I intended. We'll see if we get used to it.

Setup had a few hiccups as I figured out how to get everything on the network but overall went pretty smoothly.

Drilling them into my ceiling was harder, and a bit exhausting. Apparently my ceilings are made of cement, or something. We discovered the old detectors were not nailed or screwed in place -- they were velcro'd. Previous owners must have given up trying to nail the bastards in. The ceilings are just that tough. But, we got them up eventually, and dubbed them "Basement, Family Room, and Upstairs."

Next, we tested them. This was totally unnerving. I knew from the setup that it would be a woman's voice. I also knew that the Protects, although wireless, and battery powered (not wired -- this house is *old*) were interconnected wirelessly. We were still not prepared for hitting "test" on one Protect to trigger all three to test simultaneously. The same woman's voice echoing from different parts of the house, 1-2 seconds out of sync, reporting in on smoke and carbon monoxide levels, before reporting that all was well, freaked us out waaaaay more than it did the cats.

The Protects flash green when we turn the light off in a room, to let us know everything is fine, which is all as it should be. They also, however, turn on a nightlight -- only when they detect you moving through a room in the dark. Yeah, they are motion sensing us as we stagger towards the bathroom in the dark hallway. [personal profile] mollyamory has been muttering about me bringing Cylons into the house for over an hour now.

Robot Overload?Collapse )

Still, this satisfies some kind of weird, deep need of mine to be able to check on the house wherever and whenever I am, and be able to see that all is well, with nice green round symbols on my phone's app, and the "OK" text next to each location.

I have a vague hope Nest will come out with some nice security cameras before we finish re-wiring the house (a slow project that is taking years), so that as soon as they do, I can slap cameras on the front and back porch, and maybe set up a cunningly situated cat-cam to watch the lazy bastards sleep all day while I'm at work.


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