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Yeah buddy, peanut butter.

Messing around with images in wordpress today, and I threw together this little set of pictures of my band from waaaaay back.  We’re talking 1997 stylings here.   Such good times.


I’ve been much betwitter lately.  I got a cute twitter client and now it just sits there, running, filling with goodness.   Yay for summertime amusements.

I know I haven’t been doing a good job of blogging lately.  There just aren’t that many nights when I feel like I want to be on the computer, thinking about my day.  But today is a hot, lazy night.  It was really hot today – 100ish – but it’s pleasant now.  Breezy and cooler.

Much triumph was had, regardless of heat.  We had some lumber delivered this morning for our gate project (splitting the big unusable double-wide gate on the side yard into two openable doors) and the lawn edging.  They came way earlier than they quoted us, thus both Lewis and I were in bed when they showed up.  They didn’t even actually knock, though, they just sorta dumped the goods in our driveway and took off.  Not that it matters much, we didn’t need to sign or pay for anything.

Went to the doctor after that at my sister’s behest.  Have a good summer plan in the works to test out whether my birth control is having anything to do with these migraines, and then I have a back-up plan appointment with the neurologist at the end of summer.  All in all it was a good appointment.  I’m feeling well, all my vitals and blood work checks out, and other than these headaches, there doesn’t appear to be anything wrong with me.  Yay!  I’m glad to have an action plan for the time being.

Spent much of the afternoon car shopping with Lewis from the comfort of the internet.  Thought we were going to go see a car, but we wanted to price out some insurance quotes on various vehicles first, and called Lewis’ dad to see what insurance company they use.  Didn’t get much further than that – I guess Artie and Francie had been discussing selling us the car we’ve been borrowing, so he said he would give us a good deal if we wanted the Accord.  It blue books for more than we can afford, but Artie seems pretty serious about making sure we don’t put ourselves out.  We also called a family friend who owns the local Honda dealer to see what sort of back lot stuff he has in stock, and ironically he’s also getting in an almost identical Accord that is cheaper than the car we were going to go look at today…. so car plans are much altered in favor of someone in Davis doing us a good turn.  I suppose that is good news, though the prospect of paying car insurance next year is pretty dismal with our much-reduced income.  The other grad students make it happen somehow… I do suspect more than a few are still on their parents’ ticket.

I’ve been really enjoying cooking lately, since I have all the free time in the world these days.  I roasted a chicken tonight, with some red potatoes, and it turned out really well.  I probably could have devoured my whole half, but we squirreled away some nice leftovers.  It sure was good though – it came out beautifully crispy skinned and juicy. Mmm.  Had a really nice after-dinner walk through the fields behind our house.  It smelled really nice, like dry grass.  Davis is a nice place, even when it’s hot.  Next hot day will surely call for heading over to the Lawyers’ to abuse pool privileges!

So chilly

First of all, this new wordpress is fantastic.  I was waiting to do this update until I was out of school just in case I mussed something up and had to spend a million hours fixing it. Instead, I’ve had unorthodox success on two updating fronts.  I’ve updated wordpress, and added new and exciting widgets (including the aforeposted twitter feed) and everything went as smooth as can be.  I can’t believe it!  But what’s more, I also upgraded Ubuntu today with only the tiniest of hiccups!  Had to swap out my network manager (but the standard one is crap anyway) and I still have not quite figured out why my outgoing mail isn’t working… but otherwise, total success.  Sound working, wireless is working, display working, even *suspend* is working!!   I love you, computer.  I love you, you wonderful old Ubuntu.  And I love you, lovely people at Za Reason!

This has been a muchly successful day.  Got up at my leisure, made breakfast (mm, cinnamon tortilla rollups and yogurt), and watched silly SNL videos.  I made split pea soup in the slow cookers, and baked a loaf of multigrain bread to go with it (graham flour + cornmeal + white) .  Got the tree trimmed, and Lewis set the train up around the bottom.  The track is really great this year – so long and curvy!  Lewis also did the laundry, so we’re all well set up for tomorrow.  Watched an episode of Ken Burns’ Jazz,  and did some internet window shopping, getting myself ready for maybe going actual-type Christmas shopping tomorrow.  I even read a little, and hung up the instruments mom brought up for the music room.  Yay!   It’s so fantastic to get to spend a day doing random stuff… I’m getting so much done, even though it’s all the little unimportant-type stuff that gets passed off while I’ve got real school-type work to do.

Also, it only got up to 45 degrees, and it rained all day.  We were going to put the Christmas lights up on the house, but it just was not very inviting outside.   Our rain meter says .43 inches for the day so far!   It is nice to have some decently wintry weather though, since it’s been so mild for so long.  Not that I’m getting actual snow, Seattle-style or anything, but you know.  I’ll take what I can get.

I should also mention that we had to parties in a row!  After classes finished up Friday, we had a we had a gathering of Linguistics folks over to watch William Shatner speak Esperanto.  It was much more well-attended and festive than I had anticipated, and I’m really pleased with the whole endeavor!  People stayed rather late (for academics coming off finals week anyway) and there was much good bonding and joking and such to be had.  Yay for our department.   We spent yesterday at another party, this time Nina’s engagement party, full of all our good ol’ work folks.  I really miss all those guys!  It was so wonderful to see Nina & Jimmy and Charlise, Scott, Christine, Julian, Raffaella, Chuck, Hope, and Kim!  Chidi and Stefano were both out of town, but perhaps we’ll get to see them soon.  We promised KE we would stop in for tea time if we’re going to be in the area doing Christmas shopping.  And I believe we will!  Lewis and I already have a Rattos and tea trip in mind.  Yum.

Ah, life is good, isn’t it?  I’m looking forward to my classes next quarter, and have found I really don’t even care what grades I got this quarter.  I do anticipate A’s in both, if I may be a judge of my own work and its quality, but I find that I don’t have nervous grade checking heart palpatations like I might have as an undergrad.  I just check every day like habit, and feel like the inevitable grades will show up sooner or later.  Probably more like later.

I don’t even know what to do with the rest of my night.  Snuggle up to Lewis and read?  Go to bed early?  Start an art project?  The possibilities are endless.  Endless!

Foolish Me.


Things go wrong so rarely on my computer, and I have it set up in so many ways to anticipate my thoughts, that when stuff screws up I’m really taken aback.

I’ve been working on a spreadsheet for the last few hours, coding data for my project.  Some odd combination of keys caused me to switch my color scheme from black-on-white to inverse white-on-black.  I poked around in a few places to try and fix it, but was feeling too in-the-zone to bother long.  But the next thing I did caused a new window to spawn.  I thought that was odd and stuff in the original window was going weird again, so I clicked “save”, closed the other window, and the whole thing crashed and went into document recovery automatically.  Except it didn’t recover anything… and I somehow managed to save nothing.  I guess saving while it’s in the middle of borking isn’t effective.

So here I sit, a night of work partially wasted, wondering how I could be so lame as to not have saved anything.  I think it’s because I’ve been using this desktop wiki that automatically saves every minute, and this blog automatically saves every minute… most of my programs, at least the ones that come to mind at the moment, autosave.  Oh Calc, what happened!

It is, at any rate, a great excuse to go to bed.  Sigh.  I’ve got a whole day of this head of me tomorrow.


Well, I sat down to blog, but then this cat sat in my lap and made it rather hard to type.  Short list instead:

  • got transcription almost done – 13 minutes to go!
  • planted some of our house plants, and daffodil bulbs!
  • made delicious breakfast
  • had dinner with the Lawyers – yay!

Now off to do some pre-bed reading with this toasty Boo.

Towards A Theory of Titles

Here I am, in my office, doing some background research for a paper…. and getting all distracted by linguistics-internal silliness.  There’s a funny phenomenon in linguistic theory papers (perhaps in theory papers of other domains as well?  I’d be curious to hear from other folks about titular conventions in their field, too) where it seems as though the choices in paper titles is pretty constrained.  There’s the super-descriptive, a la “An autosegmental account of Coast Salish”, the broadly defined (“Trends in…”, “Working papers in…”, “Foundations of…”, “Frontiers of…”, “Aspects of…”, etc.), and several more modern spins on less-academic sounding cheeky titles like “Mam, my trousers is fa’in doon: Community, caregiver, and child in the acquisition of variation in a Scottish dialect”…

I’m sure there are more archetypes of lingusitics journal titles, but there’s one in particular that really stands out for me.  It’s “Towards a Theory of…”.  I confess to having titled my BA thesis in accordance with this particularly snooty sounding one.  But what I find intriguing about this one is that it seems to be relatively recent.  A quick search of the Language and Language Behavior Abstracts database gives me a full 81 hits for “Towards a Theory of”, the earliest from 1972 (“Pedagogical grammar: Towards a theory of foreign language materials preparation”).

I’m taking the first of three linguistic theory foundation classes this quarter, so all the heavy reading I’ve been doing is from the 1920s-1950s, essentially.  A time of very investigative, interesting, fairly cohesive research.  And a lot of papers that have very solid sounding titles:  “Prinicples of Phonology”, “A functional view of language”, “A System of Descriptive Phonology”, etc.  Nobody titling anything with movement included.  So my thought is… did the generitivist schism make us all self-conscious?  It’s as if no one wants to say anything very definite any more, but instead to merely add little bits of knowledge to an already extant body of work and eschew responsibility for any possible major theoretical missteps.   All of the sudden we’re “Towards a theory of” stuff all over the place!  Though in reality, I think this was Chomsky’s game plan too… by the time you’ve analyzed his most recent work and found logical flaws, he’s already onto a new formulation and no longer interested in what you’ve spent so long looking at.  Everything is in a perminant preliminary state.

Anyway.  I guess that’s enough soapboxing for now… I really ought to get back to work!

Blog fail.

Too tired!  Too busy!  Too overworked!  To blog!  How ridiculous.


Hey, it’s my 91st post!  This post-every-day thing seems to be taking hold.  And what an exciting three months it’s been in the life of me, too.  Yay.

Pretty decent day today.  Got through classes.  Lewis had a presentation to give in 260 which went well!  Mine is in two more weeks, but it doesn’t seem to be much of a big deal.  Only non-final presentation I’ve got to do this quarter, so I won’t complain.  It’s really a pretty work-free quarter, other than the mass of required reading for all my classes.  Wonder what I’ll be up to next quarter.   I think we register pretty soon, actually.  Egad!

So anyway, came home after classes and got my lesson plan for tomorrow hammered out.  I hope it goes alright.. we’re sort of just going over old homework questions, which isn’t super cool, but given how many of them got them wrong on the homework (ie, more than 90%) it looks really necessary to do.  I had Lewis get me a little up to speed on syntax, too, and did the homework trees the kids have to do for this Friday’s homework so I’ve got a grip on what the phrase structure rules this book is using are.  Had a few little syntax debates over stuff, and it was nice to hear that the stuff I found a little odd or non-intuitive about this classes trees were not me being dumb, but more that I wasn’t taught trees this way.  Woot.  Nice to know we’ll be through syntax in no time!

Had a tea and cribbage night with Ben afterwords and it was really nice.  It’s good to be forced to take some time off now and again, and it’s also nice to feel like I’m getting really natural-like comfortable with Lewis’ friends.  I even managed a 20-point hand!  Was feeling rather loopy after all the reading and thinking and planning I did this afternoon, so I hope I didn’t do anything too uncouth.  But whatever.  It’s Daily Show and bed time.

Per our conversation…







Waaaaaaay too tired to blog tonight, so here’s my day in (very) brief:

  • woke up, made starter for pumpkin ice cream; made lewis an egg-white frittata
  • got some reading done
  • went to TA-class
  • hung out at my office hours, got some reading done
  • Lewis came by office hours, chatting with Lewis + fellow graduate types in the TA office
  • went to 1st section… did okay.  neither bad nor good.  made some dumb mistakes.
  • came home, vented to Lewis about section and my failings
  • read a tiny bit
  • talked to Lewis about possibilities for socioling project, examined our “extended social network” and discovered we know lots of interesting people who might be able to hook us up with people to research
  • made pumpkin ice cream.  it’s crazy good.
  • brainstormed a million socioling ideas
  • read a lot more
  • blogged… how meta.

I don’t even want to talk about TAing today, though it’s the major portion of my mental space today.  I’ve got some stuff to improve for Friday, for sure.

But first on my list is a whole lotta sleep.