(no subject)

Mar. 22nd, 2017 05:01 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
I recently had a brainstorm and reserved the Tumblr URL [tumblr.com profile] saltine-canadian. A little while later I decided I didn't want it after all. Are there any other salty Canadians out there who might want it?

(I also later realized that properly "salty" would be saline-Canadian; on the other hand the definition of "saltine" is "a thin salted cracker" and that is... not wholly inaccurate)

Permanent Residents, refugees, expatriates, and long-term residents also welcome to apply.
emceeaich: A woman in glasses with grey hair, from the eyes up, wearing a hairband with 'insect antenna' deelie-boppers (bugmaster)
[personal profile] emceeaich

I wanted to draw your attention to a lovely, new feature in BMO which went out with this week's push: auto-linking to GitHub issues.

Now, in a Bugzilla bug's comments, if you reference a GitHub issue, such as mozilla-bteam/bmo#26, Bugzilla converts that to a link to the issue on GitHub.

References to GitHub Issues now become links

This will save you some typing in the future, and if you used this format in earlier comments, they'll be linkified as well.

Thanks to Sebastin Santy for his patch, and Xidorn Quan for the suggestion and code review.

If you come across a false positive, please file a bug against bugzilla.mozilla.org::General.

The original bug: 1309112 - Detect and linkify GitHub issue in comment

(no subject)

Mar. 21st, 2017 09:54 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
Okay, this is bizarre.

So yoga has been going so well (not just the practice itself, but the routine of getting equipment together and getting to a class on time) that I've recently moved on up to Aquafit which is a really gentle form of exercise done standing chest-deep in a swimming pool. There are usual Aquafit classes, which are basically aerobics in water, but I do Water Works, which is for people with injuries or impairments and has no cardio element. It's the kind of class where I am visibly 20 years younger than anyone else (and usually it's more like 40-60), and when I pay my entrance fee the pool staff double-check that I know it's not a workout class. But it's what works for me.

So I went to Aquafit today, and... had a good time. I felt energized and rejuvenated by the experience, my mood didn’t bottom out, I felt motivated and engaged the entire way through, afterwards I felt good about socializing with people in the hot tub, my pain wasn’t any worse when I left the pool, and tonight my muscles ache faintly from exertion but my other types of pain are actually reduced.

WHAT THE FUCK

This never happens to me. Like, I’m waiting on tenterhooks for a massive flare-up tomorrow because exercise never feels this good.

This points to my overall problem always having been “pushing myself too hard and trying too much”. I have always experienced normal exercise as painful, gruelling, and disheartening. Meanwhile, since I became disabled, all of my physical gains have come from doing the least amount of exercise possible and stopping the moment the pain gets worse. It's been a real process unlearning "push through the pain".

So can I just say, FUCK the physical education establishment for telling me that I’m lazy and any failure to achieve physically is because I’m not trying hard enough, and teaching me that a combative relationship with my body is normal and desirable.
sonia: Quilted wall-hanging (Default)
[personal profile] sonia
A series of FAQs on how to discuss race with Black people, by @absurdistwords, whose byline is 5'7 Black Male.
How to Discuss Race With Black People: FAQ Part 1 — Beginner "So. You’re a white person looking to hop into a discussion about race with black people."
How To Discuss Race With Black People: FAQ Part 2 — Intermediate "Now you’ve got a good grasp of the basics. [...] Q: No offense, but what about black-on-black crime?"
How To Discuss Race With Black People: FAQ Part 3 — Advanced "At this point, you’ve realized that acknowledging your privilege doesn’t mean that you are evil, nor does it mean that you have not struggled, worked hard or experienced hardship."

Why Lemonade Is For Black Women by Dominique Matti. "There is a specific betrayal in a Black man failing his daughter. [...] Even if she transcends them, even if she rises above the smoke, makes a phoenix of herself, a small girl inside of her will overcompensate for the parts of herself she believes to be intolerable — unlovable, disrespectable."

The Writing Life of A Disorganized, Antisocial, Black Single Mom with ADD by Ijeoma Oluo. "I sit and “listen” online, in person, on tv, in articles — to what isn’t being said, and I ask myself why."

Zipper Merge -- A Literature Review

Mar. 21st, 2017 10:21 am
gfish: (Default)
[personal profile] gfish
It's getting common to see transportation departments1, 2, 3, 4 and news stories5, 6, 7 advocating zipper merge (AKA late merge), claiming that it is safer and allows higher throughput. As someone who naturally doubts the pronouncements of transportation departments, I thought I'd look into the research behind it.

First of all, what is zipper merge? It's the idea that when lanes merge, the traffic should cluster up at the merge point, where cars will take turns merging. Some variants include active signage to signal which car should go next, but mostly not. This is compared to "early merge", where people start to get over as possible as soon as possible.

Outside of some specific situations (2 lanes going down to 1 where neither lane is obviously the one going away) this has never made much sense to me. Humans overbrake, amplifying any slowdown. Encouraging gradual merging over a long distance, where cars can slow down enough to let others in just by coasting, seems obviously better. And calmer, and more polite. Also, to be fair, the kind of people who are really vocal about zipper merge tend to put me off. But I know better than to trust my gut reaction on such things -- that's what we have science for! So what does the science say?

Under various names, late merge has shown up in papers as early as 199015. The idea really started to take off after some work in the Netherlands in the late 90s.13 Of the later work, two things really stand out to me. First, they almost all are only talking about 2 lanes merging down to 18, 9, 10, 16. Also, many of the papers8, 15, 16, 17, 18 are primarily reporting on simulated results or are lit reviews12, 14 like this post.

The number of lanes in question seems key to me. In the situation of just 2 lanes going down to 1, zipper merge certainly makes a lot more sense. The problem here is that these results are over-generalized to apply to any merging scenario. The entrance to the express lanes on N I-5 in downtown Seattle is a prime example of this. There, a lane becomes exit-only that many people want to take. Many of them apply late merge techniques, zooming up to the front of the line and then trying to merge. In doing so, they block an entire lane that would otherwise be open, and this sometimes carries over to slowing down even the next lane, as people dodge out around the blockage. This is the core of my objection to zipper merge -- it encourages people to be jerks.

The simulation issue is also critical. The simulations are all calibrated using real world data, but that mostly extends just to things like measuring the average time it takes to change lanes. The distinction between real world measurements and simulated results are often lost in later citations, such as in the heavily cited McCoy 200114 paper. It states that "Early Merge has been found to increase travel times", while only referencing two simulation studies15, 16 -- and the second citation only provides parameters for simulating a late merge system that hadn't been implemented yet at the time of publication!

Overall, the results seem pretty muddy to me. Of the others, one9 lacked a control and another10 had neutral results. There are several papers that do find pro-zipper11, 17, 18 results, but those are qualified as being tied to specific traffic volumes and/or the presence of active signage. This is a hard problem to investigate, since it involves changing habits of a large number of people. It shouldn't be surprising if the results are inconclusive.

Does any of this matter? I think so. Look at the news articles promoting zipper merge -- "science says to stop being polite" is a common theme. We should always be extra dubious when evidence seems to justify us doing what we wanted to do in the first place.

1: Minnesota DOT

2: Kansas City DOT

3: Nebraska DOT

4: Missouri DOT

5: Why Last-Second Lane Mergers Are Good for Traffic, New York Times, October 12, 2016

6: All hail the zipper merge: How Canadian politeness is killing the efficiency of our highways, National Post, January 23, 2017

7: Have you ever heard of the zipper merge technique?, Houston Chronicle, July 25, 2016

8: Wakita, Y., et al. "Comparison of zipper and non-zipper merging patterns near merging point of roads." Nature-Inspired Computing Design, Development, and Applications. IGI Global, 2012. 221-231. OPEN ACCESS

9: Grillo, Lia, Tapan Datta, and Catherine Hartner. "Dynamic late lane merge system at freeway construction work zones." Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board 2055 (2008): 3-10. PAYWALL

10: Idewu, Wakeel, and Brian Wolshon. "Joint merge and its impact on merging speeds in lane reduction areas of construction zone." Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board 2169 (2010): 31-39. PAYWALL

11: Kurker, Michael, et al. Minimizing User Delay and Crash Potential through Highway Work Zone Planning. No. FHWA/TX-13/0-6704-1. 2014. OPEN ACCESS

12: Walters, Carol H., et al. Understanding road rage: Summary of first-year project activities. No. TX-01/4945-1,. 2000. OPEN ACCESS

13: Dijker, Thomas, and Piet HL Bovy. "Influencing lane changing at lane drops." Transportation Research Board 1999 Annual Meeting CD-ROM. 1999. NOT AVAILABLE ONLINE

14: McCoy, Patrick, and Geza Pesti. "Dynamic late merge-control concept for work zones on rural interstate highways." Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board 1745 (2001): 20-26. OPEN ACCESS

15: Mousa, Ragab M., Nagui M. Rouphail, and Farhard Azadivar. "Integrating microscopic simulation and optimization: Application to freeway work zone traffic control." Transportation Research Record 1254 (1990). PAYWALL

16: Tarko, Andrzej P., Sreenivasulu R. Kanipakapatnam, and Jason S. Wasson. "Modeling and Optimization of the Indiana Lane Merge Control System on Approaches to Freeway Work Zones, Part I." Joint Transportation Research Program (1998): 345. OPEN ACCESS

17: Ramadan, Ossama E., and Virginia P. Sisiopiku. "Evaluation of merge control strategies at interstate work zones under peak and off-peak traffic conditions." Journal of transportation technologies 6.03 (2016): 118. OPEN ACCESS

18: Kang, Kyeong-Pyo, Gang-Len Chang, and Jawad Paracha. "Dynamic late merge control at highway work zones: evaluations, observations, and suggestions." Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board 1948 (2006): 86-95. OPEN ACCESS

Announcing the Shim review process

Mar. 21st, 2017 01:29 pm
[personal profile] mjg59
Shim has been hugely successful, to the point of being used by the majority of significant Linux distributions and many other third party products (even, apparently, Solaris). The aim was to ensure that it would remain possible to install free operating systems on UEFI Secure Boot platforms while still allowing machine owners to replace their bootloaders and kernels, and it's achieved this goal.

However, a legitimate criticism has been that there's very little transparency in Microsoft's signing process. Some people have waited for significant periods of time before being receiving a response. A large part of this is simply that demand has been greater than expected, and Microsoft aren't in the best position to review code that they didn't write in the first place.

To that end, we're adopting a new model. A mailing list has been created at shim-review@lists.freedesktop.org, and members of this list will review submissions and provide a recommendation to Microsoft on whether these should be signed or not. The current set of expectations around binaries to be signed documented here and the current process here - it is expected that this will evolve slightly as we get used to the process, and we'll provide a more formal set of documentation once things have settled down.

This is a new initiative and one that will probably take a little while to get working smoothly, but we hope it'll make it much easier to get signed releases of Shim out without compromising security in the process.

Buying a Utah teapot

Mar. 20th, 2017 01:38 pm
[personal profile] mjg59
The Utah teapot was one of the early 3D reference objects. It's canonically a Melitta but hasn't been part of their range in a long time, so I'd been watching Ebay in the hope of one turning up. Until last week, when I discovered that a company called Friesland had apparently bought a chunk of Melitta's range some years ago and sell the original teapot[1]. I've just ordered one, and am utterly unreasonably excited about this.

[1] They have them in 0.35, 0.85 and 1.4 litre sizes. I believe (based on the measurements here) that the 1.4 litre one matches the Utah teapot.
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
[personal profile] kaberett
... presented as a series of e-mails, sent/received over the past week or so.

Read more... )

ANTHONY NOLAN. AREN'T THEY GOOD.

"Do you know what you're having?"

Mar. 19th, 2017 08:37 pm
lindseykuper: A figure, wearing a pink shirt decorated with a heart, looks upward from between dark shapes that suggest buildings. (Default)
[personal profile] lindseykuper

I am now five months pregnant, and have reached the point where not-especially-close acquaintances and sometimes even strangers comment on it.

At this stage of Baby Kuper Rudnick's life, when people ask if it's a boy or a girl, what they're actually asking is what its genitals are shaped like. It's funny how people who presumably understand that it would be rude to ask me what my genitals are shaped like see no problem with asking me the same thing about my unborn child. The latter strikes me as, if anything, an even more intrusive question.

Anyway, when people ask, "Do you know what you're having?", I've been trying to make a point of smiling broadly and saying, "Yeah, we're pretty sure it's a baby."

Sociable weekend

Mar. 19th, 2017 03:01 pm
azurelunatic: (Pacifica)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Friday: I woke up at a sensible hour, and did housework. Purple emailed me about the afternoon's beer bash, and I collected myself to go to that. I was running a little late, but made it at last, just before Purple arrived himself. I ran into a few people, and saw people from my old team sitting around the fire pit.

I collected with them there, and Purple soon joined me.

One of my old team had been going through some significant personal changes; she talked a little about that. I gave her reciprocal information, and my card with my real name, and the information to join the tech-slack. (Later, I would ping a former colleague who had done some pioneering work on that process in this workplace, and thank her, since it sounded like my old teammate had gone through a much better experience with the workplace bureaucracy than the former colleague had.)

She and Purple proceeded to talk synthesizer projects until she left to catch her train.

I will need to email my old manager about when to visit in the next few weeks.

The food offerings were surprisingly edible for the context. It was corned beef and cabbage sandwiches with slightly inexplicably rubbery rolls, some under-fried potato-and-cabbage fried things (tasty, but with the consistency of glue), various very green vegetables (cucumber, peas, broccoli, asparagus, and possibly more), cheese soup, and ... green hummus. No green beer, though.

It was a gorgeous evening, not quite too warm. We were joined by the Scruffy Canadian briefly. Someone who I thought might be the Cute Receptionist wandered by. Since I'd missed connecting with her the last time I thought I saw her, when she got close enough I called the name. In case it was her.

It was her. We caught up a bit. Purple teased me.

We hailed lb as he was headed out of the office with his deep dish pizza leftovers. There was a good chat, including some wtf-ery over a github thread that a new arrival in channel had shared (and participated in). There are some statements, such as "An SJW's work is never done", which have radically different meanings based on the context of the person who said it, and since we don't know them that well yet, we are uncertain whether this person is working for the greater good, or complaining about people working for the greater good.

There were dinner plans. I nearly accidentally left my phone in Purple's office until it tweeted.

Dinner was nice. We really should go to the Thai restaurant near the Trader Joe's more often, since it's delicious, close, and reasonably priced. Despite the bell peppers, prawns, and peanuts in nearly everything. (I am attempting to figure out whether peanuts take the surface of my mouth off the way walnuts do, because that would just be ... perfect.)

The Signal app has resolved some of its issues for voice calls, and my partner and I were able to talk nearly all the way home. It only cut out at the place that still gets me a lot on regular network calls, where 35 joins 280 by San Andreas Lake.

It's lovely to say a sleepy goodnight to my partner as we both settle into our beds, and go to sleep with the connection open, knowing that the other is there. I swapped my old Douchebag Headphone (the around-the-neck model with the earbuds) for one that purportedly connects to two devices automatically (it did not, but it wasn't a downgrade) and thus my partner got my old one. (It so happens that I'm the one who digs leading-edge tech, and they like to squeeze every last drop of usefulness out of old tech, so we are an excellent pair there.) They are enjoying it. I was delighted when I saw them in it, because the colors are accidentally representative of both of our favorites.


Saturday started out quietly, with various audio and video chat. One of the video chat things was marred by no helpful audio coming through from the other end; I should have reset when I noticed that it wasn't doing so well.

A friend just had some technically-minor surgery, and I had made plans to go over and say hello and congratulate this weekend. There was a little bit of plan-changing, but in the end I went over there in the afternoon and said hello and such. My aunt had stopped by with some fabric for me and some cashew butter for them. Due to the placement of the surgery, we kept ourselves to heartfelt arm-clasps and some back-patting.

When I got back down to the street, I discovered that a Very Large Pickup Truck had pulled up alongside me with its hazard lights on. Unfortunately, the driver was nowhere in sight, and I wasn't sure if I had enough room to pull out. (I was parallel parked, with a sedan nearly touching my bumper in the back, and a Prius a good distance in front of me, and less than a car length of space on the diagonal to get out.) I decided that I would make one try at it, and if I didn't have clearance that I was comfortable with, I would stop and wait for the driver to return.

It turned out that even though I think there was only one foot of clearance on each side, I was able to get out. (My partner cheered me on.)

I wound up picking up dinner on my way home. They did manage to get my order wrong, although in a different way to what I thought: I thought they'd gotten the wrong thing to the right receipt entry; they had in fact gotten the order entirely wrong from the receipt on down. The replacement was also subtly wrong, but I was not going to argue at that point. (My partner, who had been on the phone the entire time, heard my order and was able to verify that if it was a hallucination that I'd said that, it was a shared hallucination.)


The calendar sharing is going well so far.

There had been an incident. (My partner and I arranged a date; it hadn't gone in their calendar because they thought they'd remember it. Unfortunately, three people managed to step square in each other's complicated traumas, and it took a while to recover. With a lot of communication and crying.) After that, I shared my social calendar with my partner (not the full-on calendar with the specifics on the doctor appointments and such). I also shared the "shadow calendar" I'd made for them, the one that has their work schedule and all the stuff that they tell me about when we're planning our weeks. It's not yet time for us to share a single social calendar.

My partner has shared that calendar on with the friends they're staying with until the situation with the ex gets cleared up. They're not quite comfortable sharing it with others ... just yet. That may change, as the weeks go on.

Today, I'm setting up the week to come, and doing the various communication that goes with it. It's not sexy or glamorous, but it's the little bits of caring contact that helps sustain a relationship. I have to remember to translate the four to five calendar entries that make up one doctor-type appointment into a single block in the social time, ideally when entering it, but at minimum when setting up the week to come.

My attention deficit disorder was diagnosed in the fall of 2015. For a while, I'm not sure exactly how long, I've had to start with the actual time of the actual event I'm going to, and schedule backwards and forwards from that, in order to make sure I have a fair chance of getting there on time and in good order.

First I enter the event, with its actual duration.

Then I figure out where I'm going to be before the event, and figure out how long it takes me to get to that place from the place I am going to be before that. (It usually takes me an hour or so to get from home to any given place in the city of San Francisco; 45 minutes to get to old-work; an hour to get further down-peninsula; anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour to get across the Bay.) I make a separate calendar entry for the transit time, with a little wiggle room.

I figure out where the next place I need to be is, and I do the same thing for that side.

I then give myself an hour's notice to start getting ready, even if I'm scheduled for something else at that time.

If it looks like it's close to my likely sleep time, I count back an hour further and allocate that as wake-up time. (If I haven't slept enough, I will use the wake-up time for an extra hour of sleep, and try to do any complicated prep the night before. Using a checklist, if possible. Sometimes this warrants an entry of its own.)

If it's early enough, I will count back eight hours from the wake time, and schedule that as sleep.
When it's a scheduled sleep time, I will have to schedule myself a bedtime reminder, which is an hour before sleep.

Sometimes, there's a chance that events will run long. In the case of my regular dentist, they've been known to run an hour late. So for them, I schedule in that buffer time. Just in case.

If it's a doctor appointment, the actual appointment goes in my bright red non-negotiable deadlines calendar, and all the ancillary things get in my main calendar. If it's not a doctor or similar, the main event goes directly in my personal calendar.

When it's something that's going to affect my social calendar, the fore and aft transit times and the event itself get globbed into one block of time that I'm unavailable for other events. Since my social calendar can be shared with people who don't need any personal details, unless it's a public(-ish) event, it gets described in vague terms. Dr. X at this address on this floor for this purpose gets vague-ed into "Doctor Appointment."

Stuff in my partner's shadow calendar get vague-ed up the same way. Why yes, my partner is going to X event at Y venue, there is a topic, and they're going with Z. That is "With Z at [vague description]." Or "Date with Z." Before my partner shared the calendar with their hosts, I scrubbed back through and edited a few items that I'd put on there, which had a little too much detail for general consumption. Even so, their hosts were clearly reading through past events, because I overheard Ms. Documentation read out the title of one (with some questions), and I promptly collapsed in giggles. Oh, dear.


There are two current crocheting projects, one of them started a while back. The older one is the penis-based sex ed hat, a sequel to the vagina-based one. So far I have urethra, bladder, glans, some ductwork, and I need to stuff the first testicle before I can close it up. (The testicle is blue, naturally.) I will probably put a drawstring or something on the scrotum so the testes can be examined easily.

The other one is a lace nightgown out of black #10 crochet-cotton thread. I'm putting #6 clear blue-green iris beads on it here and there. We'll see how long I take to finish that one. The beads are in a narrow prescription bottle that fits nicely inside the ball of thread.

I have been going back to paper to-do lists for daily use, and attempting to scan them into my image archives. I've started dating them so I have a better idea of how things went. It's been a fairly reasonable system for reminding me of what I need to get done, and I can move things forward in a helpful way. Sometimes I start pages ahead of time for stuff that needs to be done on a specific date.


After a week and a half of the new meds, I am encouraged at what they're doing with my sleep. That may wind up being a separate entry.

(no subject)

Mar. 19th, 2017 03:42 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
So, Logan:
  • Has the wary feral angry violent 11-year-old girlchild I used to be inside and write stories about. A++

  • Is hella gory, would not see again because of that

  • Makes me wonder: just how powerful and/or evil is Canada in this universe, that bad guys who have slaughtered their way across Mexico and the USA with wild abandon would screech to a stop the moment their quarry gets across an invisible line in the middle of nowhere? Like, since when is our national sovereignty that strong?

Links: Listen to the folks who know

Mar. 18th, 2017 07:10 pm
sonia: Quilted wall-hanging (Default)
[personal profile] sonia
Older Queer Voices, a collection of writings.
As [personal profile] alatefeline says, put together specifically to highlight the voices of the LGBTQIA+ elders who are still with us and teach us how they have done survival activism and superb art in a time and place that hated them.

Essays, art and opinion exploring the lives of people living with disabilities at the New York Times, via [personal profile] jesse_the_k.
This is a weekly column, so there are a lot of articles to browse through. Here's one that spoke to me: Love, Eventually by Ona Gritz.

Welcome To The Anti-Racism Movement — Here’s What You’ve Missed by Ijeoma Oluo. A primer for folks just starting out with anti-racism, and a good reminder for the rest of us white & privileged folks. "Racial privilege is like a gun that will auto-focus on POC until you learn to aim it."

Unspeakable Realities Block Universal Health Coverage In America by Chris Ladd. "Americans with good jobs live in a socialist welfare state more generous, cushioned and expensive to the public than any in Europe." (Of course, those good jobs are meant for white men.)

The Problem With Facts by Tim Hartford, via [personal profile] supergee. How the tobacco industry intentionally sowed doubt to continue profiting from a cancer-causing product, and how their tactics are being used by the current US administration. This one makes me sick to my stomach.

Always Go To The Funeral by Deirdre Sullivan, via a friend on the occasion of a former coworker's unexpected death. I was surprised how many of our former coworkers planned to go to the funeral, and she pointed me to this. I have felt extremely awkward at funerals where I felt I didn't belong, so I think it can go both ways. But the larger message stands.
In going to funerals, I've come to believe that while I wait to make a grand heroic gesture, I should just stick to the small inconveniences that let me share in life's inevitable, occasional calamity.

Story: This Is A Letter To My Son

Mar. 18th, 2017 07:04 pm
sonia: Quilted wall-hanging (Default)
[personal profile] sonia
This Is A Letter To My Son by K. J. Kabza. Science fiction about a trans kid, and people finding their way. The writing is full of light, and full of deep emotions handled just right.

via [personal profile] rushthatspeaks, who edited the story.

Great Browser Extension for Readers

Mar. 17th, 2017 06:21 pm
jesse_the_k: Two bookcases stuffed full (with books on top) leaning into each other (books)
[personal profile] jesse_the_k
I just started using the "Library Extension,"

http://www.libraryextension.com

I didn't have to create an account: I just picked my local library from the list. Now every time I click an Amazon link, the extension shows me whether my library holds the book. So cool.

Right now it's only available for Chrome, but they promise a Firefox extension soon.

(no subject)

Mar. 17th, 2017 09:24 am
synecdochic: torso of a man wearing jeans, hands bound with belt (Default)
[personal profile] synecdochic
Doc thinks the abdominal pain/bloody urine is due to a UTI (not a bladder/kidney stone) and is sending me over to pee in a cup at the lab! Whee.

Cats!

Mar. 16th, 2017 11:24 pm
synecdochic: torso of a man wearing jeans, hands bound with belt (Default)
[personal profile] synecdochic
I also realized I had not introduced you all to the new feline occupant of the house!

Meet Thea:

Thea lounging on the vet counter, fresh out of fucks to give

So, [personal profile] without_me retweeted a tweet a friend of hers had made, looking for a new home for a friendly former-feral whose human had died and who was living on the streets being intermittently fed by the neighbor. [twitter.com profile] detachment_red hadn't been involved in that, but was looking for a new home for her, since the neighbor apparently wanted to stop feeding the cat and was going to just leave her roaming the neighborhood. (Special place in hell, etc.) Alas, she already had a cat who needs to be an only! So, to Twitter she turned.

Sarah and I had agreed that after losing our three boys in the space of a year, and since Ginny, Ruth, and Naomi had settled down into a comfortable balance, we weren't looking for another cat, but fortunately, Sarah understands that sometimes Twitter just hands you a cat. ([personal profile] without_me has confirmed that she specifically RT'd it because she knew I'd see it. It's like I'm a well known sucker or something.) We picked up the cat the next day and took her straight up to the vet's, where she promptly (and accurately) identified us as suckers and got a head start on the snuggles:

Thea crawls into my lap during her first vet visit

This is less than an hour after we met her, btw. I'm just saying. It's important that you allow a new cat to acclimate to you in her own time and don't force your attentions on them. entirely too many cat pictures )

We're not yet seriously going to start worrying about her inability to get along with Ginny/Ruth/Naomi (who have all been curious but very well behaved about the strange cat in the house) or her tendency to charge at the door whenever she sees/hears one of the others on the other side of it. Our current hope is that the pain from the teeth fuckery is affecting her temperament and she'll mellow the fuck out once we get the teeth treated. She's sweet as hell to humans (occasional nip aside, and we've got that mostly trained out of her by now), at least, barring the time she was charging at Ginny and Sarah got in the way and got clawed to shit for it. ("I swear I'm not self-harming," she had to tell the new doctor she was seeing this week. "We just adopted a new cat. Which can be kind of like a form of self harm, if you think about it...wait, it was my wife's idea, I guess that makes it domestic abuse.") All she wants to do is be in your lap! Until she gets tired of being petted and bites you instead of jumping down and walking away, heh.

Her name with her last human was Missy, but we didn't think it suited; after a week or so of trying everything under the sun, we settled on Thea.

I really, really hope we can mellow her out enough to keep her, and that it's not a case of "must be the only cat in the household"! I mean, come on, look at this fucking adorable sweetheart of a face:

Thea, sacked out in my lap (and snoring)

(If she does turn out to need to be an only, I'm going to try to talk my mom into taking her -- Mom's been missing having a cat lately since their last one died last year -- but if I can't convince her, I may put out the call to see if anyone can give this precious baby a home where she'd be the only cat. But that's borrowing trouble at this point! There was sniffing through the cracked door today and only a little attempted murder...)

mutter mutter mutter

Mar. 16th, 2017 10:16 pm
synecdochic: torso of a man wearing jeans, hands bound with belt (Default)
[personal profile] synecdochic
"Fucking bodies" TMI muttering behind the cut )

Oh, and for those who follow me on Twitter ([twitter.com profile] rahaeli) and saw me marveling about how my e-chart showed a call to my specialist Friday morning post-surgery, after which I suddenly got better pain meds (read: actual pain meds, not "barely the level of pain meds I take on a daily basis"): I had the monthly visit with the specialist yesterday, and asked about it! Turns out they did not actually call down to verify with her that I wasn't a drugseeking addict, after all: the call was actually Thursday afternoon, not Friday morning when I was happening to the nurse over pain management.

What it actually was, though, is not necessarily more reassuring: it was the anesthesiologist calling her to find out what CYP2D6 ultra-rapid metabolism was. (The call notes apparently included the phrase "when we called back, he said he had already found information on Google".) CYP2D6, for those who don't know, is the liver enzyme that processes a large number of the drugs we use in modern medicine; it's produced by a cytochrome in the liver that has high variability in populations, and some people produce none of the enzyme and some people produce a whole lot of it. (I produce a whole lot of it.) My particular mutation means that I process most drugs very fucking quickly, and require very high dosages of anything that's metabolized by CYP2D6 and weird dose schedules for anything where it's the metabolite that actually has an effect, rather than the substance itself.

Something like 25% of the drugs we use in modern medicine are processed by CYP2D6, including pretty much every drug used in anesthesia, and while there's very wide phenotypical variation among populations and racial groups, estimates range anywhere from 20% to 40% of the population has some non-standard expression of the genes that code for it. It is the sort of thing an anesthesiologist ought to consider basic fucking fundamental knowledge, basically, and this dude had no fucking clue what I was talking about. Like, the last time I went for surgery, I specifically asked the anesthesiologist (who'd also done the surgery before that and managed to get it perfect) what I should tell future anesthesiologists to make sure that shit got handled, and she said "oh, just tell them you're a 2D6 ultra-rapid metabolizer, that'll be enough for anyone."

(No, it's not just that I was using the wrong vocabulary. I tried a few different ways of explaining it.)

But hey, I didn't wake up on the table and I did wake up once I was in recovery, so I guess it all worked out in the end. (Definitely asking for a different anesthesiologist if I have surgery at that hospital again, though, oi.)
jesse_the_k: mirror reflection of 1/3 of my head, creating a central third eye, a heart shaped face, and a super-pucker mouth (JK oh really?)
[personal profile] jesse_the_k

A local culture critic faces up to the truly scary inventions of modern processed food in his series, "Yeah, I Ate That." Every Wednesday me & MyGuy alternate reading it aloud and trying not to splatter food all over ourselves. This week's edition addresses Peeps* in all their Easter finery with words )

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