Just One Thing (20 August 2017)

Aug. 20th, 2017 08:36 am
hollymath: (Default)
[personal profile] hollymath posting in [community profile] awesomeers
It's challenge time!

Comment with Just One Thing you've accomplished in the last 24 hours or so. It doesn't have to be a hard thing, or even a thing that you think is particularly awesome. Just a thing that you did.

Feel free to share more than one thing if you're feeling particularly accomplished!

Extra credit: find someone in the comments and give them props for what they achieved!

Nothing is too big, too small, too strange or too cryptic. And in case you'd rather do this in private, anonymous comments are screened. I will only unscreen if you ask me to.

Go!

When I was a kid

Aug. 20th, 2017 12:45 am
conuly: (Default)
[personal profile] conuly
Wise produced a variety of chips called Crazy Calypso. And they were delish. And then they went off the market :(

But! Later Wise produced an extremely similar flavor called Mambo Mania. These were also delish, and may have actually just been the first chips with a new name. Those too, alas, went off the market.

Since then, I've spent a ridiculous amount of energy trying to find a chip with a similar flavor profile, to no avail. But if anybody ever produces one, I'm going to stock up.

Nomnomnom.

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left_turns: (Default)
[personal profile] left_turns posting in [community profile] common_nature
I went up to Chicago a couple months ago and keep forgetting to post this. I spent a day at the zoo and conservatory in Lincoln Park near the lake shore. I nearly didn't bother with the children's zoo, but I ended up over there looking for something else. The trails through it are set up like a woodland trail--sort of narrow and winding through a lot of birch plantings, and covered in bird poo. Near one stand of trees, the zoo had posted a few signs saying basically "yes, we know the paths are messy and please also don't bother the herons above you; those aren't ours."

Apparently black-crowned night herons are on the Illinois state endangered list, but there's been a flock of them nesting in the zoo and somewhere else further south in the park for the last few summers.

DSC_3198
+5 )

Comic for August 20, 2017

Aug. 20th, 2017 11:59 pm
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archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
[personal profile] archangelbeth
Not so good to get to bed at 4am again, but at least sleeping till 2pm got me some, well, sleep.

Havva Quote
M__ should try Black Sails at some point.
w~~~~~~~ keeps briefly misreading as "Black Snails".
[anon@emit] "Arr," they say, oozing their way across the deck.


INwatch+Bookwatch )

Dragons under fold )
yhlee: Alto clef and whole note (middle C). (alto clef)
[personal profile] yhlee
A couple friends let me know that talking about composing for orchestra is, in fact, something that might be of some minor interest and also I am taking a break from working on Dragon Pearl while the Dragon borrows my laptop (which is my writing machine), so.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a professional composer! I did not go to conservatory. I am an interested amateur. My background is seven years of more or less classical piano, including a few years at the Houston Music Institute (relevant because they taught some theory and basic composition), a few years of viola, and years of screwing around on basically every instrument I could get my hands on, including three summers of classical guitar, mandolin, soprano recorder, pennywhistle, ocarina, and diatonic and chromatic harmonica. (Harmonicas actually get pretty complicated, more complicated than I personally can deal with--different tunings, cross-harp, slant-harp, etc. I only know the basics. [1]) This kind of jack-of-all-trades-ism is not great if you want to be a performer, where you really ought to become expert in your chosen instrument(s), but it's not awful if you want to compose.

[1] To anyone who doubts that the harmonica is a "real" classical instrument, I present to you Villa-Lobos' Concerto for Harmonica and Orchestra with soloist Robert Bonfiglio [Youtube], which is the recording I used to have before the stupid fucking flood. That's a chromatic harmonica, BTW; you can tell because of the use of the chromatic slide in some of the ornaments. More information. I will FIGHT anyone who tells me the harmonica is not a REAL INSTRUMENT.

Further caveat, I am only discussing Western music. I don't know enough about non-Western traditions to tell you anything useful about them. I compose more or less neoclassically because that's what pleases my ear and I feel no need to be innovative in a technical/theoretical sense. (Schoenberg's twelve-tone system is brilliant from a technical/theoretical sense but I cannot usually stand listening to it except in the limited context of certain kinds of film/TV scoring. I wouldn't listen to it for fun.)

And for yucks, I have perfect pitch, which in almost all contexts is either useless or an active hindrance (I am a suck liar and let's just say that I avoid a cappella performances and first-year string players like the plague--there's such a thing as good a cappella, but unless you are Carnegie Hall good I don't want to risk it), but has limited applications in the realm of music, ahahaha. For most applications relative pitch is hell and away more useful. (I actually get interference between relative and perfect pitch, which sucks.)

Anyway, let's talk a little about the fundamentals of music from the standpoint of composing.

I keep telling people that composing for orchestra is not hard. Composing for orchestra well is hard. Because it's true! It's a lot of things, true, but you can break it down into components. I'll talk a little more about this below.

Music is about patterns--creating tension with different dimensions of pattern, then resolving it. In terms of pitch, you only have twelve of them repeating across various octaves to work with! But because you can combine the pitches in different ways, you can come up with different melodies. Speaking in terms of standard music notation, that's the "horizontal" dimension. And pitch is combined with patterns of rhythm--units of time. cut for length and tl;dr )

Okay, I am out of brain and I'm not sure any of this even makes sense to anyone who is not me. :] I am happy to answer questions (or, if you compose music yourself, talk shop!).

Naart Day 19 Crayon bison

Aug. 19th, 2017 07:41 pm
feng_shui_house: me at my computer (Default)
[personal profile] feng_shui_house
sooo sleeepy- I have totally warped my sleep schedule. On the bright side I did at least attempt all the poses in my old Beginner's Yoga book, so maybe I'll get to sleep on time tonight.

Have a few more bison. :^)

aug-19-crayon-bison.jpg

I added them to the other one so now there's a herd in a design.

https://www.spoonflower.com/designs/6718377-bison-buffalo-herd-by-eclectic_house

Music Break

Aug. 19th, 2017 04:18 pm
lovelyangel: (Chibi Haruhi)
[personal profile] lovelyangel
Kalafina: Into the World Music Video
Kalafina: Into the World Music Video

Because I loves me some Kalafina…

bookspoils!

Aug. 19th, 2017 06:04 pm
yhlee: Drop Ships from Race for the Galaxy (RTFG)
[personal profile] yhlee
Returned books to library. Got these from the booksale shelves for 5 cents apiece (they were 1 cent apiece but I told the librarian to keep the 8 cents of change):

- Star Trek tie-in novel Ishmael by Barbara Hambly--I read this a long time ago and like Hambly :)
- Star Trek tie-in novel Uhura's Song by Janet Kagan \o/ I read this a few years back and also thought it was lovely! I'm really thrilled to own my own copy, in decent shape for a library discard even, although it means the library didn't want it anymore. -_-

What are some of your favorite recent libraryspoils/loanspoils/bookspoils?

ETA: Oh, and while I'm at it, I'm sad I woke up from a dream involving an animated TV series of P.C. Hodgell's Chronicles of the Kencyrath. I'm several books behind in that series (at this point I might as well wait until it's all out before rereading the whole thing from the start) but would that not be awesomesauce?!

Aria in HD!

Aug. 19th, 2017 03:12 pm
lovelyangel: (Akari Ehh?!)
[personal profile] lovelyangel
Nozomi Entertainment, a division of Right Stuf, launched a Kickstarter project to put a Subtitled and Dubbed version of Aria the Animation on Blu-ray. It looks like they are uprezzing the DVD source, not remastering from the original materials. Still, Aria scaled to an HD screen would be really nice! Count me in! (I’m a Deluxe Prima.)

The Kickstarter is one week old and has already sped past the initial funding mark and is racing through a series of stretch goals. If more people will jump in, we could get season 2 (Aria the Natural) put on Blu-ray as well!

Don’t know when we’ll get a North American release of the Aria the Avvenire Blu-Ray set. The Japanese Release has no subtitles.
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[personal profile] goodbyebird posting in [site community profile] dw_community_promo


small batch icons is dedicated to the idea that less is more.

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niqaeli: cat with arizona flag in the background (Default)
[personal profile] niqaeli posting in [community profile] disobey_gravity
So I keep meaning to get a rice bucket and otherwise do wrist/grip strengthening exercises but I keep running into a really oddball problem.

Which is that everyone who's interested in improving grip strength this way pretty much assumes -- not without reason, to be fair -- your wrist extensors are relatively weak compared to your flexors and focuses much more on strengthening them.

I just have literally the reverse problem. My wrist flexors are relatively weak compared to my extensors, and I'm really feeling it when I go climbing (or do aerial). (The tl;dr version of how the fuck you get to this really weird place, strength-wise, is: over ten years as a massage therapist.)

So! Does anyone have exercises for the flexors, specifically, that they're fond of? Variety especially would be good; I get bored of conditioning super quickly if I don't have different things to cycle through.

Cats Against Nazis

Aug. 19th, 2017 01:58 pm
rachelmanija: (Heroes: support WGA)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
The rally was fine, though quite small. I imagine there would have been a much bigger turnout if the Nazis hadn't cancelled. One of my neighbors was there!

I went with [personal profile] hederahelix. We are now heading for Clementine.

Here I am with my sign and feline fellows in resistance.



Non-Cornish pasties

Aug. 19th, 2017 01:00 pm
azurelunatic: Chocolate dessert, captioned No Artificial Shortages  (no artificial shortages)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Belovedest has mentioned a few times that it's hard to get your hands on a nice meat pasty around these parts. I contemplated the matter and asked a few questions.

At length, it seemed like it was a good day to try.

My reliable source for understanding the principles behind what I'm cooking is Serious Eats. So I read through the pie crust stuff again. (Incidentally, the site is a clickbait hole for DELICIOUSNESS.)


Clickbait: http://www.seriouseats.com/2015/03/science-of-pie-7-myths-that-need-to-go-away.html

Science: http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2011/07/the-food-lab-the-science-of-pie-how-to-make-pie-crust-easy-recipe.html

Recipe: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/07/easy-pie-dough-recipe.html
2 1/2 cups (12.5 ounces; 350 grams) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons (25 grams) sugar
1 teaspoon (5 grams) kosher salt
2 1/2 sticks (10 ounces; 280 grams) unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pats
6 tablespoons (3 ounces; 85 milliliters) cold water

I looked at the amounts involved.

There was no way that I was going to be able to fit all that flour and butter into my food processor, which is an attachment to my stick blender. I looked closely at the amounts.

It so happens that the ratio of cups of flour to sticks of butter is 1:1. So I decided that I could make a test batch, one cup and one stick. The salt and sugar is less important, and in fact the sugar is kind of not what I wanted for a pasty dough.

I put 2/3 of the flour together with the butter and a bit of salt, then added a little water and more of the flour. (Probably not how I should have done it.) Then I mixed it in a larger bowl with a little more water. My hands are rather hot, so I tried to cool them down with ice.

I wrapped it up in cling wrap and let it cool off in the refrigerator. I pulled it out a few hours later, and quartered the dough. I saw that it had distinct stacked layers, like a good steel blade. I was thrilled.

I rolled it out in the best tradition of my mother, between two sheets of parchment paper. (There is no rolling pin in this kitchen. I used a glass.) I stuck it back in the refrigerator, still between the sheets, to wait while I prepared the filling. (Parchment paper and waxed paper are easier to handle than cling wrap, for this.)

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2012/01/cornish-pasty-british-meat-hand-pie-recipe.html

This was not a Cornish pasty. [personal profile] wohali said something about a chicken curry pasty, and I went "Oooo!" and she advised that you can use pretty much any chicken curry recipe, just dryer than usual.

I went for it.

My basic chicken curry is chicken plus a brick of golden curry sauce plus assorted vegetables, and oil as needed. This time I decided to cook the chicken thigh meat so it would be easy to separate from the bones in my multifunction fancy rice cooker, along with some spiced oil left over from a previous recipe, and some dry onions. I cooked the vegetables and the curry brick separately, only combining them all (and some potato flakes to sop up water and oil) at the end. My partner is much better at handling chicken meat in all its phases than I am, and stripped the meat from the bones before I mixed them together.

I did roll it too thin, and I let it get too hot when filling it.

Despite the holes, I stuck the crust together with egg wash, and egg washed the outside. (I used the leftover egg wash to make a little bit of curry scrambled egg, which my partner ate on top of their salad.)

I'd wisely said that if the food was not going to be ready by 10pm, we should eat something else. The pies came out of the oven just as we were finishing chicken nuggets, but we still had enough room to test half a pie each.


Mmmmmmmmm.

I will be making these again. And the dough process is relatively simple with the tools at hand, so my partner (who can follow a recipe, but isn't yet the cocky ass in the kitchen that I am) may wind up learning the process too.


I put together a bit of sweet pie dough just now, and it's chilling in a ball in the refrigerator. I'm thinking that some fruit pies might be in order...

it's the drunks singing 'my way'

Aug. 19th, 2017 03:45 pm
musesfool: close up of the Chrysler Building (home)
[personal profile] musesfool
I am intending to start watching The Defenders, but my internet has been dropping intermittently, which is fine if I'm reading fic but annoying when trying to watch Netflix. Who knows if this will even post? Not me!

eta: it did not post at 2:10 when I wrote it, but the internet seems to be working now at 3:45.

In other news, I was originally supposed to go my lawyer's office sign the contract on the coop on Thursday, but then he was like, "it's no different from the first contract for the other purchase, so I can see if they'll accept an electronic signature, or I can overnight the copies to you and you can send them on to the seller's attorney with the deposit check when you've signed." And I said, "great!" because it's not really convenient for me to get to his office. But the seller hasn't forwarded some of the documents he needs to review before I can sign, so that hasn't happened yet. Arrgh. So annoying. Because I need to forward copies of all of that to the loan officer as well, so she can proceed.

It's always something. Sigh. I'm still not sure I believe anything will ever actually happen, so I guess I'm more zen about it this time? Last time it went so smoothly right up until it didn't. Maybe this one going in fits and starts is more realistic and will have a better outcome? Idek.

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