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Oof. Just checked the internets and learned there was a mass shooting (disgruntled employee version) in/near my Kansas hometown. The main shooting was in nearby Hesston, my mother's hometown, but it sounds like someone was shot in Newton, where my dad still lives.
I'm lousy at making phone calls and writing letters to people I care about, because I'm always busy and I think there will be more time later. That ain't always the case. Talk to your loved ones, people.
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Enjoy an A Circus of Brass and Bone reading at the CONvergence convention in Minneapolis!

11 a.m. on July 5, 2015

There will be donuts!
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"No need to head to the Farmer's Market! Head to Cub Foods, to fill your basket with fresh produce picked at the peak of the season!" - Pandora ad that just played at me.

I find it very interesting that Cub is trying to lure back the people who shop at farmer's markets. I wonder if the group is actually large enough to hurt their bottom line these days? I was listening to a Splendid Table episode that was discussing the impact of the recession on food purchasing habits, and one of the more interesting bits was that farmer's markets and producers of organic foods have not really been impacted.

I hope it's significant. I hope it's an enduring trend.

This may also say something about Pandora's ability to target demographics based on song taste--seems a little far-fetched, but possible, given how good they are at targeting songs I may like.
cloudscudding: Photo of Abra Staffin-Wiebe (spacecat)

  • 12:11 Best news headline today: "As Blogs Are Censored, It's Kittens To The Rescue." (

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  • 11:10 Local law firms are laying off lawyers (at least 2 firms are clients). No wonder we've been having less business.
  • 11:12 Oops. Link to news story re lawyers:
  • 16:23 It's been warm enough to open the back porch window for the cats. Reminded, they restlessly inspect all windows.
  • 17:52 Anyone local want a coupon for a free 2-liter bottle of Diet Dr. Pepper? I thought it was regular. Don't want diet.
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  • 13:55 Working downstairs on my laptop so I can watch all the inauguration coverage on TV.
  • 13:56 Statuary Hall is decidedly creepy. Just sayin'.
  • 14:05 "The Color Purple" is a great book, but the idea of it as a musical is kinda horrifying.
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  • 10:11 Science fiction tells me that deliberately creating an evil AI is a *bad* idea!
  • 11:26 Conclusion: MN "Taxpayers" League are assholes.
  • 11:29 Since when is <$5/month/family a "massive" tax increase?
  • 12:18 PostSecret Exhibit at Mpls public library through Nov. 30:
  • 21:31 Successfully acquired Halloween costume! Now just need a little costume tape to make sure everything stays in place. What place has it?
  • 22:06 Miss having Phil to put cold feet on. Is very sad.
  • 22:27 Hot water bottles don't howl as entertainingly.
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  • 07:51 Time to turn on my bike taillight in the morning. And to dig out that box of gloves and hats. It's--brisk outside.
  • 14:19 Potential problem with slow-cooker dinner: the tasty food-smells are making me hungry. Hrm.
  • 18:41 Dear Fictionwise, No. Please do not offer me an "eBook Bailout." Just--no.
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  • 06:44 Owwie ow. I deduce that I twisted my wrist and then slept on it.
  • 06:57 Let's see if I got the news right--no economic plan, bank collapse, and we're invading Pakistan. (Slate)
  • 16:23 Dear Wind From the South, I like you too, but please stop trying to embrace me while I bike home in a Southerly direction.
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  • 10:01 Finished my work project, am now v. hopeful that will be able to leave at my regular part-time time.
  • 10:15 Good thing--E-Coli in your tupperwire (Sci-Am):
  • 15:58 I am so deliriously happy that today's Friday, I can't even express it.
  • 21:58 My spam tells me I've won the British lottery. Again.
  • 22:04 V. good article re jumpstarting yourself. (Via Lifehacker)
  • 23:12 Every time I see my cat curled up in his basket in my study it makes me smile.
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  • 08:11 Living in the future is sometimes scary. Cyberattack with bullet warfare for the 1st time:
  • 11:57 I feel distressed and don't know why. Which is distressing.
  • 13:41 ++ NgithOwl project didn't get in early enough to yank me away from off-site today.
  • 15:11 The little animation? Not ideal for a professional business site.
  • 16:51 Contraception != Abortion. Sign here.
  • 16:56 Best recipe review is 3rd down:
  • 22:17 ++ Got reassurance that putting excerpt up was not Horriblest Thing Evar.

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  • 23:38 Why is it that good political and other discussions seem to always necessitate not enough sleep & too much alcohol?
  • 08:31 Sounds like the NgithOwl elevators tried to eat people again yesterday.
  • 10:09 Awright, who pushed the 'economic panic' button? 'Fess up!
  • 10:34 Listening to the news today is like watching a car crash--strangely fascinating.
  • 13:44 Postal experiments--what do you think the USPS will deliver? Charming and funny.
  • 13:50 Listen to "The Osteomancer's Son." Powerful, dark but uplifting, a story as carefully constructed as an ossuary.

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  • 06:57 Today is my birthday. It's a grey day, but I'm wearing a bright orange broomstick skirt, green shirt, green knee-highs, and ballet flats. #
  • 07:54 ++Working in the IDS building today, not NgithOwl, which means will hopefully be killing time online and not actually *working*. #
  • 08:30 Old news, but 1) yay for gene tests, and 2) Ron Paul's a huge douchebag. (SciAm) #
  • 08:56 What in downtown Mpls has good birthday specials? ::pondering where to go for lunch:: #
  • 11:20 Fleeing work early to meander through candy store and book store before lunch at The Local. Freedom to do whatever I choose is awesome. #
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  • 23:18 That earlier jott was "goats do roam" wine 1/2 off at Haskell's. #
  • 23:20 Twins lost baseball game. Post-phys. therapy walking made knee hurt a lot, and dress shoes gave me 4 blisters. Also, stinky man ick. #
  • 23:31 Whoa. I have so many photos to upload and sort through and try and do something with. ::runs and hides:: #
  • 07:08 Yeesh. Woke up v. tired. Hope I can escape work early & nap. ::crosses fingers:: #
  • 07:49 Suspect it's a bad sign that I've taken my first painkiller of the day before 8 AM. #
  • 08:27 Want to see this: ( #
  • 08:57 If a dog's wagging tail leans to the right, you're good. Useful info, via SciAm ( #
  • 09:11 Writer's Digest--good tips on how to find time to write - #
  • 09:35's free ebook-a-week program is teh awesome. + free Nebula nominees from fictionwise & I feel the need for an ebook reader. #
  • 09:36 Spam: "Spring weaken your organism. Support it with vitamins." #
  • 09:38 @ cvalenti re dog's tail - Their right. #
  • 11:04 #
  • 11:19 Prosthetics has open-skull surgery test subjects. Yikes! (via \.) #
  • 11:28 Wonder if I could write a romance a month...during work down-time? #
  • 13:03 Ngg. For the umpteenth time, NgithOwl has underpaid me by $2/hr for a significant chunk of time. Snarl. #
  • 13:14 Home. Step 1. Consolidate to-do list, master task list, floating scraps of paper, and "Action Needed" inbox items. #
  • 13:20 Boy kitty is snuggling ferociously. I think he missed me when I was gone all the time. #
  • 14:57 Happy. It is raining and cold outside, but I am snug at home. #
  • 15:24 Dear girl cat, You are welcome to sit on my lap and purr, but please stop trying to lick my hands as I type! #
  • 15:52 Poor husband has to work a double shift tonight! #
  • 16:35 Grrr. V. annoyed that "Error 623" keeps popping up. #
  • 16:39 Since my ride's working 2nd shift, think I will be staying home. And warm. Instead of gimping around all lonely and cold. #
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Oh, Hell.

Jul. 11th, 2006 01:17 pm
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Explosions in the trains in Mumbai. Over 100 dead, over 200 injured. Some of you might recall I went to high school in India. I know people who live in Mumbai, and I know how little is required to set off another round between Pakistan and Indai--and this ain't exactly little.

Idris Deby

Dec. 13th, 2005 06:14 pm
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From a NYT article about a World Bank oil proposal:
Chad, one of Africa's poorest countries, has a long history of instability and bloodshed. A vast, arid land about three times the size of California, it is home to 10 million people.

A majority of its citizens rely on subsistence agriculture and animal herding. It ranks 167 of 177 nations on the United Nations Development Index. Transparency International's 2005 survey of corruption around the world gave it the worst score, an ignominy it shares with Bangladesh.

Since gaining independence from France in 1960, it has been tormented by civil wars fueled by ethnic and religious tensions. Like Sudan, its restive neighbor to the east, its northern population is largely Muslim and has dominated the country's politics, while its southern half is largely Christian and animist.

Mr. Déby's rule has been a relatively stable period in the country's history, but the troubles in the Darfur region of Sudan, which borders eastern Chad, have spilled over into Chad along with 300,000 refugees. Internal divisions, along with reports of Mr. Déby's failing health, have led to much speculation that the government is on shaky ground.

I lived there for three years. It's where I went through adolescence, had my first crush, and started my menses. It's where I lived through three coup d'etats (the first two were unsuccessful; the last one was by Mr. Deby), saw my first machine gun, and saw the dead lying in the streets. It's where my mother almost died from tropical diseases. It's where I ran with a pack of half-feral dogs and swam in a crocodile-infested river. It's where one of my best friends was married to a man older than my grandfather, who beat her. It's where I saw a man die slowly, by inches, in the back seat of our truck, because the roads were too bad to get him to the hospital in the capital city quickly enough.

Idris Deby has done very good things in Chad, beginning when he opened the secret prisons and let the disappeared go home again. I'll pray for his health, and hope that Allah will welcome him with wide-open arms to Paradise.


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