Monthly Archives: September 2009

I Never Knew Carl Sagan

I never really noticed Carl Sagan until after his death. Part of that was due to how I backed slowly into science. My childhood may have been filled with Asimov’s books and the spectacles of Star Wars and Star Trek, but I hadn’t given much thought to becoming an honest-to-goodness scientist. In high school, after [...]

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Visualizing Music

How do you visualize music? Can you turn an auditory experience into a visual one? Scores are one way of doing just that.

While a score requires training to read fully, you can follow along when it’s paired with the music. That was part of the allure of early computer music programs like the Music Construction [...]

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Hobbit 419

Dear MR BAGGINS, Fellow Conspirator,

I am Thorin Oakenshield, descendant of Thrain the Old and grandson of Thror who was King under the Mountain. I am writing you to discuss our plans, our ways, means, policy and devices for rescuing our treasure from the dragon Smaug.

During the reign of Thror our kingdom was a prosperous one. [...]

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Regencies and Revenants

For a Dragon*ConTV bumper this year, I made up names of books that might follow “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies”. I had “Beowerewolf”, “Grave Expectations”, “Vampire Fair”, “Jude the Undead”, and “Northanger Abbey But This Time Catherine Starts Fires With Her Mind”, among others. I’d thought I’d covered the waterfront.

Then I saw the announcement from [...]

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From Corinth to Cairo

Today I started wondering how long it’d take me to walk from Corinth to Cairo.

100 miles? That’d only take me a couple of days! Thanks, Mississippi!

This post has been brought to you by the US’s habit of naming cities after other cities. Because Paris, Arkansas wasn’t going to come up with anything better.

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Etsy Sneak Peek

Yes, I’ve been working on Etsy shop stuff but I’ve also been taking care of other things. How is that whenever I decide to embark on something kinda big the whole rest of my life decides to be busy and awesome and crazy and full at the same time?

The kids both have colds this [...]

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That’s Why You Will Not Survive

Eli has a new favorite song that I now must play when I take him to kindergarten: “The Underdog”, by Spoon. Here, enjoy the band playing it on David Letterman.

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Suburban Fantasy

His roar, even from the garage, shook the walls of the bedroom where I was busily ironing ruffled shirts. The outside door slammed open, adding to the collection of dents in the wall, and Javier Rodriguez de Orbaneja stalked in. I glanced up at him, then away. It’s never a good idea to lock eyes [...]

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Rules I Never Expected to Make

“We’re going to the gardens, but don’t roll around in the sand.”

“Noodles go in your mouth, but your plastic snake doesn’t.”

“No shrieking while dad’s on the phone.”

“Sure, grab some pretzels from the pantry while we sleep in.”

“If you’re going to squash your sister, do it gently.”

“Get off the couch with your peanut butter hands!”

“Don’t wake [...]

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I’ve Been Cosplayed

You may remember that, two years ago during Dragon*Con, I spontaneously ended up on stage leading the audience in singing Re Your Brains. At the time I described it as the most surreal moment I’d experienced.

It’s been trumped: this year I was cosplayed. Check this business out.

These two strolled into my space panel on [...]

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