noideadog: (monkey!)
ORIGIN 1754: coined by Horace Walpole, suggested by The Three Princes of Serendip, the title of a fairy tale in which the heroes “were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things they were not in quest of.”


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Three_Princes_of_Serendip

Accidents and sagacity, my friends! I am thoroughly delighted by this etymology :-D
noideadog: (drum)
[Poll #1720689]

Edit: I want to hear from Americans! Is it correct in American English?
noideadog: (natural dancer)
Our cat just attacked the keyboard in the middle of an episode of The West Wing and I swear what he typed was "µµµµµµµµµµµµµµµµ". Greek puns! He's a clever little dude.

We're into the part of the year that Joel calls the Interregnum: the period of lawlessness and chaos between Christmas and the New Year. This is why it's ok that we're watching West Wing and eating chocolate in bed at half past one in the morning. ("Because God knows we wouldn't be doing that otherwise", Joel points out.)
noideadog: (drum)
Does anyone have or know a Scooba? Are they any good for lazy shites busy people who aren't willing to interact with them every day? They seem to expel some sort of proprietary cleaning solution and then squeegee it back up again, so I guess there's a lot of filling and emptying and cleaning out (and buying of overpriced detergent)? The site says "One full tank washes up to 250 square feet before it requires refilling", which isn't promising. Nonetheless, I'm interested in product reviews from people I know because that is the new social paradigm, or whatever.

In other news, I just learned that 'squeegee' is a valid verb, and not a new one:

squeegee |ˈskwēˌjē|
verb ( -gees , -geed , -geeing ) [ trans. ]
clean or scrape (something) with a squeegee : squeegee the shower doors while the surfaces are still wet.
ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: from archaic squeege [to press,] strengthened form of squeeze .
noideadog: (Default)
I think I'm finished with Nike+. It was becoming an impediment to morning runs: I'd lie in bed wondering whether I'd remembered to charge my ipod and whether I even knew where it was and whether the dongle was on the right shoes and whether I should have added better playlists and whether I even wanted to use it since its calibration is basically random when you're still finding your stride and it's not like it's giving any useful information other than "you went for a run!" and arguably I already knew that. It got to the point where the thought of getting ready to go running made me go back to sleep for an hour instead, and that's not how it should work at all, is it? It should be clothes, shoes, water, go out and play. Since I stopped using Nike+, I like running more. Not having to use the shite flash webpage helps my anger levels too.

Not that there's no technology in my running life: my new favourite thing is MyTracks on the android. It uses the phone's gps to calculate how far you've gone, so calibration's not an issue, and you can use the c25k app at the same time (multitasking!), or play music or whatever. If you stop for a breakfast burrito after you've finished, you can insult people on twitter or read books on it while you wait, and if you're on call, it'll let you know if you're needed. (The android's a nice little computer that contains an almost adequate phone).

I use my phone for enough things that it doesn't take extra brain cycles to know that it's charged and at arm's reach. Best of all, it exports its data in nice sane csv, or alternatively uploads it to google maps, google docs, or both at once. I've only used it twice, but so far I think MyTracks is brilliant. I like it enough that I went in search of a premium edition to pay for, but it is stubbornly free. Dammit!

Linguistically, I would say that I'm over Nike+ and all over MyTracks. What a bizarre language.
noideadog: (Default)
Damn. I was just remarking to myself that it's a good thing that Joel's back soon -- it's 3am and I'm eating crisps in bed -- when he texted to say that Eyjafjallajökull is keeping him in Ireland for an extra day. Can I last another day without becoming a mouldy hermit, shouting at squirrels? Time will tell.

Eyjafjallajökull, though. Seriously. Do you think any word in any news story has ever had a higher instance of being copied-and-pasted rather than typed? It's the newscasters I feel sorry for.



Edit: A second text from Joel says that all flights are booked out until Monday. The cat shook my hand, packed a little knapsack with tuna and shoelaces and left to seek her fortune.
noideadog: (Default)
Sign of the times: Someone tweets "Heading to my moms." and I honestly go "oh, cool, two mothers" before realising it's just bad punctuation.
noideadog: (coffee)
Irishers, how bad was the Tubridy-Cowen interview? From the way the Sindo tells it, Tubridy couldn't have been more UNFAIR and MEAN. Gosh, I had no idea that the Taoiseach was so beloved these days. Was it really like they say?

Apartment update: The seller is ready to close, and we're ready to close and the bank says that they're ready to close[1] and maybe we'll own an enormous debtapartment really soon. As per guidelines, I'm doing three hours of wrist and forearm exercises every day to prepare for an epic day of contact signing. Maybe it will be this week; maybe not. Either way, we've been thinking a lot about how to turn our new place into a machine for living in, and late this evening it became obvious that interior design literature would help. Was it unreasonable to expect Chelsea, the gayest part of the city (male division), to be a font of interior design advice? Well, perhaps it was, and anyway I was disappointed: I had to go all the way to 5th Ave to find an open magazine shop. The apartment-as-lifestyle section was a bit overwhelming, but I bought a few of the least aggressive titles (I'd tell you which ones I bought, but the cat's asleep on them now), and they were also out of Irish Timeses so I got the Sunday Independent. I wouldn't have done that at home, but it's different here; I was so impressed at them having an Irish Sunday paper on a Sunday that I couldn't not buy it. (I mean, I could have not bought the Sunday World, but you see what I mean).

Sunday update: We went to Blue Hill and had the tasting menu. They didn't have a veggie tasting menu, but they invented one: Joel mostly got slabs of pig (pork face, pork belly, pork I don't know what else) and I got baby tomatoes and peppers and weird mushrooms and quinoa from the single place that grows it around here. We had two courses of fresh berries for dessert. Very highly recommended.

[1] Sometimes mismatched pronouns sound nicest and I am defensively mentioning this here so you can know that I thought about this for far longer than was appropriate.
noideadog: (random)
I have the line "Now get the hell out of my internet" rattling around in my head, but I can't find anything to do with it. I give it to you. Please use it wisely.
noideadog: (lucy)
Dogs have owners. Cats have staff.

The word of the month over at JoelAndTanyaHQ is crepuscular. In case it's as new to you as it was to me, I'll rip off wikipedia's definition here and tell you that "Crepuscular is a term used to describe some animals that are primarily active during twilight, that is at dawn and at dusk." This creature classification includes our own Keeper of the Schedule, who woke us up at dawn by racing around the living room then falling into a basin of water I'd left on the floor. Since she normally wakes us up by thumping me until I feed her, I found this a pretty entertaining start to the day.

Wouldn't Crepuskula be a good name for a cat?

I bought a small animal harness and a bag of tuna snacks, and my project for the next few weeks is to brainwash Lucy into associating the harness with nice things. Day one was inconclusive: nobody got bitten, but she backed into a corner with an expression like the end of the first act of Full Metal Jacket. The tuna snacks are our only hope for reconciliation.
noideadog: (monkey!)
Joy can be a verb! "Shah Zaman ... saluted him and joyed with exceeding joy and caused the city to be decorated in his honour." What a fantastic expression. How are we not using it all the time?

Edit: In other news: sesquipedalian.
noideadog: (coffee)
From a dude at work: "a bad analogy is like a leaky screwdriver".
noideadog: (coffee)
I have no ability with crafts, so trying to press these roses is best described as "optimistic". Nonetheless, I took a popular first step on the path to failure, and asked the internet what to do. Its advice is typically varied and contradictory. Some time later, two roses, doused in vinegar and water, are resting inside a box of kitty litter. Two more are in the refrigerator, one vinegar-soaked, one not. A fifth is tucked, parchment wrapped, between rorid (dewy) and rosemallow (a hibiscus) in Websters New Universal Dictionary (Unabridged). A sixth, reduced to petals and leaves and layered in tissue paper, lies in the men's anatomy section of a biology book. Surely one or more of these will dry in a useable fashion. I have seven left, if you have other suggestions.

If you ever wanted to feel like an early 19th Century poet, plucking individual petals from a rose will help.
noideadog: (coffee)
In the worst tradition of livejournal, this one's just a list of names. Surviving the last ten days has been a feat of complex scheduling and, apart from one occasion where -- I swear this is true -- I forgot to eat chips, everything worked out precisely as planned. Advanced scheduling techniques employed included: harnessing the power of jetlag to get up early, using buses and trains to sit quietly on my own and recharge my introvert-brain, eating before I got hungry, and being generally lucky about things. I imagine this will be the dullest post you skim past today, but I'll feel accomplished for recording this stuff.

I arrived in Shannon on the 19th and was met at the airport by my sister Aishling and her friend Peter. In Galway I met his boyfriend JP, and another friend, Eileen. Aishling's husband, Gabriel, joined us for a much longed-for pint of Guinness and pretty good Chinese food.

Arriving in Dublin on the 20th, I found that I had an hour to kill, and jumped off the luas a stop early for a pint with Simo on Capel Street. We walked to Sufi's from there and I had dinner with Nina, Drew, V and Pixies, and somehow missed also seeing Hadook, who happened to be there at the same time.

Home to Rathfarnham, then awake at 6:30am to talk about nerdy things with Pixies, before catching the bus into town to meet my parents. Following a reliably mediocre Kylemore breakfast, we did some shopping on Henry Street, lunched at Keoghs, fought our way down Grafton Street, shopped some more, then met V at Le Monde for a drink before my parents got their bus home.

DoC came into town for dinner at Cornucopia, then he, V and I went to the Long Stone for the first of the evening's parties, where I compared fake New York accents ("hey lady, I'm walkin' heea!") with fellow Manhattanite Diane, and met up with Niall and Maeve. After that, the luas took us to Parkgate Street for Tim's annual Quiet Couple Of Pints. We didn't stay long, but I had time to catch up a bit with Tim, Paul T, Doug, Marie and Catherine and steal Doug's chips. DoC was kind enough to drop us back to Rathfarnham. I slept soundly.

On to Sunday, when I met Gliceas in town for lunch at the cafe which has inexplicably replaced Moka. Once again I didn't meet Aoife and he didn't meet Joel and we cemented our respective suspicions that these people do not actually exist. Next order of the day was a luas to Stonybatter to steal Brid away for yummy Irish coffees at the Aisling Hotel. The 67A is considerate and passes close by, so I didn't need to go back into town before going out to Maynooth to visit Cian, Meaigs, Sorcha, John and noob humans Kathleen and Simon. After a lovely, companionable evening, I sleepily read comics on the dart and then the bus back to Rathfarnham.

Monday 22nd was a work day, but that didn't preclude a pintlunch with Sarah, as well as catching up with Krabbe, Youngman, Psn, and other work folk, and even getting some work done. Monday was my only social meetup failure, when I texted Niall about getting chips and then immediately forgot I had done so. No chips for me. (Sorry, Niall.) Monday was also eagerly anticipated for being the day that Joel arrived from New York. We had a pretty good pizza dinner in Millers, and an early night.

If Matt's not there, it's not Tuesday lunch in Dublin, but he was and it was, so that was ok. We went to a place near work that I forget the name of, had good lattes, then walked around Merrion Square a bit. I realised that Tuesday would be my only opportunity to have chips from Presto, so I bought some even though I wasn't even a tiny bit hungry, taking some back to the office for Joel, and finding MrYan there too. Joel and I called to Fallon and Byrne and Sub City after work for emergency supplies (cheese, comics), and met V there too, before heading for Kells. Whew.

Christmas was good, though Kells makes me fucking crazy.

Back to Dublin, checked into the hotel, quick lunch at the Epicurean Food Hall, then the luas to Glen and Brid's house again, this time to catch up with Glen. Brid and her Mum and young Elijah arrived just before we left, which was cool timing. Babies smell excellent, I learned. We couldn't find the bus to Santry, so we lazily cabbed to Dizzy's and Britta's housewarming. Since Joel had an early flight, we only stayed a couple of hours. It was nonetheless long enough to make brief but enjoyable conversation with the party's hosts, as well as Dizzy's parents and Ian, Aine, Shane, Humbug, Orly, Grimnar and Matt and to learn the useful words scrotiform (pouch-like) and jumentous (having the characteristics of horse urine). We bussed back to the hotel.

Yesterday, Joel flew home, and I walked aimlessly around the city centre until it was time to meet V for breakfast. We took the southside luas to Balally to look at the place where her wedding will be, but the estate was locked up, so we peered through the gates instead. We got the luas back as far as Ranelagh, then walked into town from there so's not to waste the rare good weather. This last couple of weeks has been beautiful, actually.

From O'Connell Street I took a 16 bus to Griffith Avenue for tea with OB and Raphaele, peeping through a mostly closed door with shy Maia, and my first introduction to two-month old Felix. OB drove back into town, where I met Mary at Easons to admire her Jamiroquai hat and have dinner in Grand Central. Back to the Arlington Hotel to collect my massive bag, then I got the 66 to Maynooth to spend my last evening this year in Ireland with the ever-wonderful Drew and Nina.

They kindly took me to the airport today, and now I'm sitting on a plane waiting for people to take their seats.

And that is what I did on my Christmas holidays.
noideadog: (nyc)
34th Street is too busy for my peace lovin' brain, but it's lovely to emerge from the subway and see the Empire State building hanging overhead. Today's really nice, too: warm enough for an open coat over a t-shirt and so bright that I was squinting into the sun while looking for the DMV.

That was about an hour ago. I'm back at the DMV now, having been home in the meantime to collect additional ID. A passport's not enough proof of identification; this time I have the original version of my social security card, a utility bill, a credit card, a bank statement and what I think of as "my papers", the wad of legal documentation that allows me to work here. It looks like this just might add up to me getting a State ID, and that will mean I can get into bars without adopting a ridiculous stage irish accent and pretending I'm just visiting. And that will be good.

(I might still do the accent thing for fun. (I might have to, actually. I'm very conscious of how my real accent is probably changing here. I heard myself offering the cat "toona" the other day. SAVE ME.))

My ticket is B202, a number that matches nothing on the boards, all of which are clustered in the late 400s. I may be some time.
noideadog: (monkey!)
C'mere to me now and I'll tell yeh. I'm after going for a mineral and yer wan was there with that yoke, the head on him, jaysus.

I kind of talked like that when I was a kid. Is it sad that we mostly don't any more? I mean, my dad absolutely does, but it's going away, isn't it?

I was trying to convince ob_v to take up saying "so ih tis" at the end of every sentence. His daughter Moiya has a Dooblin accent now, and I think he should do his part to preserve bits of irish slang that are disappearing. Also, it'd be funny.

Harassing ob made me accidentally read the Indo, specifically this article about words we don't use much any more. It's tempting to pick up some of these again, but nobody would understand me if I started putting delph in the press, or buying a geansai for the garsun or whatever. That said, Joel's started saying "Are you now?" and "Did you now?", which makes me very happy.

My nana used to say "Ah, beeda beeda", or something like that to mean a mild version of "What a shame". I don't think I've ever heard it anywhere else, and I can't figure out how to spell it to google for it. Bide bide maybe?




Ob_v claims that the Indo can actually be intentionally funny, and pointed to this story about meeting 'the Bono of Euro politics', Nicolas Sarkozy, as proof. It made me laugh out loud twice, which is impressive for any piece of reportage, so.. there you go.

It is 12:36pm and I am no longer on call. Hurray!
noideadog: (natural dancer)
Best thing from today so far, from a mail asking for initial ideas for our office Christmas party:


the guidelines:

1. budget is [blah]
2. number of people is [blah]
3. must have 2 clowns (1 making balloon animals, 1 just looking scary and unapproachable)


I laughed and laughed and laughed.


In other news, I signed up for the 'history of ny architecture' course, largely because Joel's interested in doing it too. I'm almost certain I won't have enough free time and will therefore be stressed and irritable for most of Autumn, but there you go.

"..but there you go" is a very useful expression I picked up from someone on here, possibly [livejournal.com profile] mockduck. You really can justify anything, no matter how irrational, by explaining why it's a bad idea and suffixing it with "but there you go"
noideadog: (culture)
Found accidentally online. You don't expect the irish independent letters page to deliver a lot of wisdom, and yet..

"Micheal O Nuallain (Letters, July 5) draws attention to the fact that there is no word for 'Yes' or 'No' in the Irish language and, hence, the impossibility of voting 'Yes' or 'No' to Lisbon in that language.

I have consulted Tomas de Bhaldraithe on this point and for 'Yes' and 'No' he prefers 'Sea' and 'Ni hea', which means it is and it isn't and, of course, differs from 'Ta' and 'Nil' (there is and there is not) used in the referendum.

That one cannot, in the first official language, get a plain 'Yes' or 'No' to a question, says something about the Irish psyche."

Nice, no?
noideadog: (meerkat)
Also, I'm in a (rubbish) python course, and the dude is talking about tuples. He keeps saying "tup". He's said "tup" like seven hundred times. I'm laughing lot, but quietly, in a sleepy way.

(It's from the middle english, you know. Tupping funny.)
noideadog: (monkey!)
It's not exactly the same angle, because I couldn't resist including my boy in the picture, but here's another shoddy blackberry photograph from the windowsill of the new place, 46 hours after the first. We.. uhh.. moved in, I guess.

There's a bunch of things left to do -- the random-tools-and-crap cupboard closet is barely breached, and we need to rehang three interior doors, polyfilla spackle where the spice rack used to be, and unhang the curtains, but we're pretty much out of the old place. It was hard work. Harder than I expected, certainly, with the aforementioned burly gentlemen on the payroll, but once they were gone we were still left with the small but difficult things: bins garbage cans, the hoover vacuum cleaner, a couple of chairs, computers, an ice cream maker.. things that aren't very heavy, but that each take most of one person's carrying ability for a single trip. And a single trip involves going down three flights of stairs, through two locked doors, crossing the street, through another two locked doors, and up two flights of stairs. We worked hard today. We sweated and swore a lot today.

Lucy's still exploring. She's not -entirely- impressed so far. Some things she likes: the skirting board baseboard is a sort of three dimensional thing that can be removed from the wall and turned into a cat-sized tunnel; the boxes make for good climbing. Some things she doesn't like: the windowsill isn't as securely attached as it could be; we didn't like that lamp anyway.

Check out that brickwork!
This evening, we celebrated, glugging fizzily from the bottle, because we didn't know where the glassware was buried. I'm impressed that the Chinese dude in the offie liquor store, whose utterances are usually incomprehensible to me, has far better French pronunciation than I do.

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