pebblerocker: A dream ship sails through the sky. (Fool in the Grand Master of the Interest)
May partner was watching a documentary the other evening on sleep and dreams, and there was a section on lucid dreaming. It's fascinating to me that it's potentially possible for brains to do that; I think it would be interesting to experience.

Last night I dreamt I was riding around the streets in the area where I used to live on a small purple bicycle with straight handlebars. I rode around for a bit and then I noticed I was riding a larger red bicycle with swept-back handlebars. I was surprised that the bike had changed while I was riding it; I also had a very strong feeling that there was something very important to remember about why bicycles don't change into different bicycles and what it meant that this had happened. I struggled to work out what it was that I needed to remember, what vital fact this clue was telling me - I wrestled hard with it, but the crowd of children running behind me distracted me and I forgot what I was trying to do.

Every time I'm reminded that lucid dreaming exists I seem to have one of these dreams; this one was the closest I've got so far, with not just the realisation that something odd and impossible had happened, but the knowledge that I could deduce something from the impossibility, even though I didn't quite get to the answer. Odd sights in dreams (day into night, childhood home attached to current garden) don't seem to trigger any realisation, but things that feel wrong do. Both bicycles in my dream are real ones that I'm familiar with riding (though only one is mine) and they feel very different, with different riding positions and gears.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Photos of storm damage at the NZ Herald, linked by [personal profile] vilakins - near the end is my absolute favourite, taken in Ponsonby, haunt of rich people who like coffee, showing devastation of a shop-window dummy. Or perhaps a failed Auton invasion.

There wasn't as much wind as that down in the Waikato - no trees down at our place this time - but we had torrential rain and discovered that the drainage at our new house wasn't done properly at all. We were almost flooded out two nights in a row. I was outside at half past ten last night with torch and shovel, trying to divert water from pooling dangerously close to the laundry door and wishing I had sandbags to use. Our driveway turned into a cataract and I drove the cars up to park at the top, where there wasn't so much water, before we started work on digging a drainage channel right across the drive and reinforcing it with a dam made of fenceposts and the gravel we'd reserved to make a path - whatever came to hand.

Some drainage contractors came out (very promptly!) to put a new trench and pipe in yesterday, but the rain that evening bucketed down even harder and the runoff coming down the hill overflowed the new drain and went straight on as if it wasn't there. They will be back next week with a digger and a bigger pipe. I'm hoping we can put across the point that the drainage should have been put in properly at the start (i.e. in the right place - where the water goes) and we won't have to pay for the work ourselves. Though the contractors definitely need their fair pay, because they're doing a great job for us and they're not the same people who couldn't be bothered doing the work properly the first time.

My partner and I are both so short on sleep...
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I discovered an Agatha Christie book I'd never read and I'm enjoying it so much. I'm at the part where the second murder has just happened and the detective has all the information but it's in a jumble of red herrings, and everyone is acting suspiciously but PROBABLY just because they're bartering fresh butter and don't want to talk to the police about their evasion of the post-war rationing, and I haven't a CLUE who did what and why. This is my favourite part of the murder mystery experience and I sort of want to stop here or read just one paragraph a day and stay deliciously tantalised forever.

Puzzling and puzzling all day at work about it: maybe the young distant cousins of the inheritor of the large fortune are *plot details from the middle of A Murder is Announced, but not the end* )

My ebook copy seems to have had a few OCR glitches creep in. Most obviously, the title is down as "A Murder is Announces" even though it's "Announced" on the cover image. There was a bit of misplaced punctuation which made it look as if someone's husband's name was Sonia. The best mistake, repeated twice, was when the masked man entered the drawing room "nourishing a revolver".
pebblerocker: Mary Bennet frowns: "I should infinitely prefer a book" (I should infinitely prefer a book)
There's a sign on the main road in my town saying:
[FAST FOOD OUTLET]
600 mtr's

That saves one character over writing "metres" in full, and including the space uses FIVE characters more than if they'd used the actual abbreviation.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Out riding my bike and a big truck passed me loaded up with bales of hay. At least 16 or 20 round bales, stacked two high - these are the ones that have to be moved with machinery. The sweet, hot grassy smell coming off those!

Someone must have been using metal polish inside a house further down, because when I smelt it I was reminded of my grandmother's silver christening mug. I was allowed to play with some of the less fragile things out of her china cabinet and that was one of them.

I pedalled past the bread factory and it was raisin bread day! I never know when they're going to be making raisin bread, it can be any day of the week. Going past on raisin bread day is exquisite torture, especially when I'm hungry - I love that smell so much.

Then I rode past the crystal wizard dragon shop, which sells heaps of smelly things. Sometimes it's scented soaps wafting out the door, but more often it's incense. They burn incense in the shop, and even when there's none burning the amount of incense packed in there means you can smell it a hundred metres down the road.

Biking up along by the railway lines, all the fennel growing beside the tracks was in flower, growing tall and smelling strong with the sun beating down on it. I'll be checking later on when the seeds are ready so I can pull off a few handfuls and try to make them grow around my place.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Hello internet. I still exist.

In a week's time I'm moving house. That's always stressful. I've been lucky enough to stay in one house for seven or eight years and I don't want to pack up everything, I want to pull the blankets over my head and hide forever. The new house is nice though; it has insulation and double glazing, and when I visited it after it had been shut up all day with the sun blazing down it was still nice and cool inside - unlike the tupperware box of a house where I live now.

Geoffrey continues to expand his hunting repertoire. He has cut down a bit on the earthworm hobby and has in the last few weeks carried in a couple of young birds, a mouse or two and a frog, many of which were completely unharmed and successfully released. He's in the habit of carrying his captives straight into the bathroom and gloating over them in there, giving us plenty of time to effect a rescue. The frog (species identified as a green and golden bell frog) survived unscathed, despite being carried who knows how far in Geoff's teeth, and we took it to the lake where it is presumably happy and better educated than before.

I'm keen to get back into Blake's 7 and start posting about it - though at my rate the Adventures with the Wife and Blake blog will outstrip me rapidly. Currently I'm progressing through Due South series 1 with much enjoyment, except that the 1971 Buick Riviera got blown up and I felt too sad to go on to the next episode. The car in a cop show is always practically a main character. No chance of me running out of Due South because there are so many episodes to a series!
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Via [personal profile] vilakins and [personal profile] feng_shui_house

I Am A: Lawful Neutral Human Druid/Wizard (2nd/2nd Level)
(that is, a nerdy environmentalist)
Full results under cut )
This may explain why, despite considering myself an anti-establishment sort of person, I keep glomming onto Lawful characters and identifying with them massively.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I made a knitted cat toy for my day's art. Somewhat large photos under cut.
Read more... )
pebblerocker: Avon from Blake's 7 (Avon)
Finally getting around to posting about B7 again. Second episode, yay! I think everything about Blake's 7 is full of yay. This is fun!

Read more... )
pebblerocker: Red Dwarf's Cat climbs through a hatch; text "Investigating" (Investigating!)
This cat! Can you believe this cat! Have a picture of him under the cut. Butter would not melt in his little mouth.
Read more... )
pebblerocker: Mary Bennet frowns: "I should infinitely prefer a book" (I should infinitely prefer a book)
My library asked me to do a survey and it was all going nicely until I got to question 10: Do you think it's important for people to have access to a library? [yes/no] Why?

Because people need AIR. And PARKS with TREES in them. And LIBRARIES DUH. Should I answer this question as if explaining to a three-year-old who asks "Why do we breathe?" I should probably answer as if explaining to a soulless public servant who is looking for ways for the government to save all that money it had to use up on tax cuts for rich people. I don't know how to answer.

I haven't actually been to a library for quite some time because I'm going through a phase of re-reading books I have in my house in order to prove that I need to have them. Later this month there's a book sale on and I have already arranged for a day off work specifically so I can go. I have also donated THREE whole books to the sale to make room for the AT LEAST TWENTY that will come home with me. I can't wait.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
It's been five years since I accidentally fell into a den of Blake's 7 fans. I've seen a lot of B7 icons and screencaps, character portraits for art month, squeeing discussions I can't quite follow, fanfic I've enjoyed without being capable of fully appreciating. Now I'm finally getting around to watching it!

This post will probably only be of interest to B7 fans, especially to those who enjoy getting others hooked (you evil people, you...)
Read more... )
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
The Marriage (Definition of marriage) Amendment Bill had its third reading in Parliament this evening, and it passed: 77 votes to 44. We watched it live right through. Louisa Wall (whose bill it is) made a wonderful opening speech and a lot of the other speakers were fantastic. It was great to see gay and lesbian MPs speaking about what the Bill means, and that there was so much cross-party support. I didn't expect so many old men of the National party to vote in favour - some who weren't even wearing lavender ties. Maryan Street, Mojo Mathers and Te Ururoa Flavell made amazing speeches. Suddenly I feel like Parliament might be relevant to me more than once every four years.

This makes New Zealand the 13th country in the world to legislate marriage equality and it feels so good.
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
My Snapshot Bingo card was a bit all over the place but I managed to fill in one line of it and post the photos. That means I can have a new card before the round's over, although I may not get far with it. [personal profile] feng_shui_house: there are coots in one of the pictures :)

Photos )
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
I can't tell which occasions are an encounter with someone who uses "bro" or "mate" as gender-neutral terms and which are people misreading me until after the double-take, if there is one. I think the man at the tyre shop is one who calls women "mate"; I mean, I've just had a haircut and was wearing my baggy checked shirt, but I was carrying a handbag.

When I was 20 it was easy to see how people could mistake me for a short, downy-chinned 14-year-old boy. I wonder what will happen as my skin shows more and more signs of belonging to an over-30 in outdoor occupations. Will having wrinkles make me obviously not a boy? Or will I turn into some sort of ageless, genderless leprechaun creature?

--

I signed up for [community profile] snapshot_bingo! I always feel arty near the beginning of the year, maybe from the general resolutionary atmosphere of New Year, maybe because I'm halfway between NaArMaMos. I'm not sure what the general artistic standard of the community will be like, and if it'll be encouraging or intimidating, but it'll be fun to try even if I don't show the results to anyone. Here's my bingo card:
N Grand Bird Text I
Fence Apricot Hallway Heard Wore
Lemon ImperfectFree Space Navy Children
Smile Button V Favorite Table
Joy Fuchsia Plate Outside Aqua
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
There are plenty of words I expect a spellchecker to underline; they haven't heard of a lot of foods I eat, like "tahini". Spellcheckers seem to have trouble with contractions other than the very most common, ones like "everything'd" freak them out. I expect spellcheckers on any computer other than mine to object to "travelled" or "fibre", but mine has strange quirks about recognising "online" as a word.

Now and then I come across a word that surprises me when the computer decides to underline it, because it's so obviously a word to me and I've never had it drawn to my attention that anyone would think otherwise. Tonight's disputed word is "earbashed". (Used about myself, of course. I'm aware that I have strong opinions and go on about them in certain circumstances.)
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
Partner and I got bored with having the same old food every day. Potatoes, rice and split peas feature heavily and we end up rotating the same meal every 3 days instead of once a week -- that's if we feel interested enough in food to make something instead of just having toast. He also wanted to start taking lunch to work so he doesn't end up buying chocolate bars for lunch every day, which is hard on the bank account as well as on his health.

I looked up meal plans online and got this one (link via Wayback Machine because it went 404 a day after I found it) and we're working from that pretty closely this week. It's going well. Partner is remembering to take sandwiches or leftover dinner to work for lunch; I think the external authority, this LIST that orders him to take a certain packed lunch, is working better than his internal "suppose I should but I'd rather watch cat videos" or my "I would pack lunch if I was you". Dinners are not all that different from what we'd have normally -- stir fry, bean stew, pasta -- but not having to do the thinking is a big help, and working from a recipe means we get new flavours, different spice combinations than I'd think up myself, and that makes things so much more interesting.

We put hoisin sauce on the shopping list since the stir fry recipe wanted it, and it's a new favourite. I can't stop sticking my finger in the bottle for a taste. And pickled gherkins is another new food: partner bought some for sandwiches because he likes it when they give him some on his sandwich at a chain of sandwich shops. (They always just say "pickles" on the menu but it's always pickled gherkins, not pickled something else.) He bought the gherkins to try and I had some and liked them a lot and accidentally ate them all in a week. And there was a recipe that said cilantro, so we bought a bunch of coriander, which has had a mixed reception. I never ate it growing up because my mother can't stand the taste, but I think I like it; partner tasted it and is very wary of having any in his dinner.

I'm going to have to make sure I try new foods regularly so I don't get bored with food. I only discovered olives and eggplant a couple of years ago; it's well past time to add a few new tastes to my repertoire.
pebblerocker: Mary Bennet frowns: "I should infinitely prefer a book" (I should infinitely prefer a book)
It's international book week. The rules: Grab the closest book to you, turn to page 52, post the 5th sentence. Don't mention the title. Copy the rules as part of your post.

"But I don't like all the sleuthing you do."

(I think you can guess the genre, at least. I have a whole shelf of these, very nearly the whole series, in rather shabby condition.)
pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
1. I like my dentist, he's very cool. He's really into his subject and loves talking about it, a bit of an Adrian Anorak only more personable. After my check-up he was telling me all about different types of bacteria that exist in the mouth and why some cavities progress faster than others, and I was really interested in it, I was fascinated by fun science. If only it was fun science that didn't have Lots Of Pain as a consequence.

2. I like gaming with other women! My guild used to have lots of women when I joined, women moderating and mentoring and women just playing. With attrition the active playerbase has gone down over the years (the game's ten years old after all) and for the last couple of years I've been gaming in several overlapping groups in which I'm the only woman, and I know of one other woman playing on the same server whose sessions don't usually overlap with mine. Now, with the release of Diablo 3, there's an influx of new players; I'm playing regularly with the niece of a long-time D2 friend, I had a game with an LJ friend this week, and there are more women around in my guild which is GREAT. I want there to be even more.

3. I like Scrapheap! We're watching the first series, before it became Scrapheap Challenge and got a new format and more money for sets and a different pair of teams every week and semi-finals. In the first series Robert Llewellyn is the only presenter and there are only two teams, trying to win the most challenges by the end of the series. I love that it's low-budget and doesn't care. I love how everything is dirty and they eat lunch with greasy hands and wear grubby grey uniforms. I love Anne the hovercraft champion and I love Major Dick's moustache. I love all the welding and bashing things. I love that it doesn't try to hype everything up and make you wait two ad breaks to see anything interesting happen like some shows I could mention, it's actually exciting and doesn't need hype because everyone just wants to see which tractor is strongest and whether the trebuchet will work better than the mangonel.

4. I like not being at work. I had to work 6-day weeks for a year due to constant ongoing staff shortages and it was really hard and I was getting depressed because I never had the energy to do anything fun. They've finally managed to hire two new people and I haven't been needed to work at all for a month, which is longer than I'd normally like to be away from work but since I've been overworked for so long I'm really happy about it. I haven't exactly been an explosion of industry and making the house perfectly tidy and writing all the stories I never got around to and being organised etc, but I am doing a little gardening and reading a lot and I'm able to do fun things that also need physical effort rather than having to save up energy to get through work. And my strained wrist is recuperating nicely.

5. I like reading the same books my mother is reading, working our way through a series together and swapping books back and forth and going to the library to collect books for each other and talking about them. I'm amused when she's read a book and I'm partway through and I say I don't think things will go as well as Certain Character hopes and she just says Hmmmm.

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