regency cards

I'm Back?

Gee, it's been a while. I just got a new haircut yesterday, which is totally not the reason I'm back, but since that was the last thing I posted about I feel like I should at least acknowledge it.

For some reason the browser on my desktop started going completely nuts in a way that made me not want to keep a tab permanently open to each of LiveJournal and Dreamwidth. Combined with my having largely moved to twitter, twitter+facebook+googleplus having taken a lot of the content that used to be here, and my spending less time in front of the computer for pain reasons, I got out of the habit of checking in to the journals.

Last week I got fed up with Opera not working the way I wanted on my netbook, firefox being unusable, and upgrading/installing browsers being a giant pain because Gentoo and a netbook with a small SSD don't actually get along well at all and blew away the whole storage and started over again with Arch Linux, which I keep running into whenever I'm doing searches for how to fix/improve something in a Linux installation. So far I'm loving it...things pretty much just work, installation is easy, customization seems straightforward, it thus far has insisted on installing very little cruft (I have a working system with a good deal of storage left), and the speed of installing binaries is really pleasant. Plus for some reason it's running a lot more smoothly than Gentoo ever did, including being able to handle firefox with a dozen or two open tabs including a bunch of app tabs without having any trouble at all. Not sure why, but I'm pleased.

And the happier firefox means I'm able to come back here more easily, at least on this system. Will probably return to my usual habits of lurking a lot and posting occasionally.

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regency cards


[So I'm totally going to need a new default avatar photo soon, aren't I?]

Got my hair cut today. I'm more sure than in December that this one's going to work for me. I might not end up loving it (still getting used to it, obviously), but I think I'm not going to hate it and it's not going to constantly annoy me, so yay.

This is the result of a Deva Curly cut. It took two hours. Some consultation (and I had a picture, which helped, although what I ended up with is pretty far from the a good way) first. Then cut, dry, which was time intensive. Then a wash, and trimming of bits that weren't falling right. After that a dry under the diffuser, followed by some final adjustments (including a segment that really wasn't looking quite right).

Throughout the process, my stylist, Katie, was really great about communicating to make sure we were going in the direction I wanted. Especially when she was going to do something different than the photo, because it made more sense for my hair or was actually more what I wanted. Great experience.

Admittedly, my wallet's not thanking me right now, but my shoulders are. Totally worth it. Citrus Salon & Spa in Canton, CT. Recommend.

Photos...Collapse )

Should be straightforward and easy to maintain, too.

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regency cards

Hivemind: Cylindrical Tins?

I'm looking for a relatively water-tight (needn't be perfect) cylindrical container, ~2.5" in diameter, and ~1.5-2" in height, opening at the top.

This is to contain shaving soap, both for everyday use and to travel. Plastic is ok, metal might be more fun in the long run, I don't much mind if it has brand names printed on it or mild stray aromas. Unlike hand soap, shaving soap doesn't get very wet, so the seal can be approximate.

Surely someone knows where the exact thing can be found inexpensively/free, and I just haven't thought of the right place to look. Any ideas?

Originally posted at (comment count unavailable comment[s]|comment there)
regency cards

Regency Men's Shirt collars?

Anybody have good images showing closeups of a men's Regency shirt, preferably without a cravat covering them, preferably from multiple angles? I'm having trouble finding what I'm looking for.

Images of a well-sourced pattern would probably work as well.

I'm hoping to make a detachable collar which can button over a modern formal shirt of the sort typically worn with tuxedos. If I get this working, I'll make up instructions/a pattern and post it somewhere.

I think I can make up something functional if I know what I'm trying to accomplish.

In my dreams I will have a working prototype to wear this weekend.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

[Sorry for the multiple post to people who look at facebook too, but I realized my audience of potential contributors is split.]

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ten the hard way, dice

Nonverbal Consent

I think Parker [the older of my two ferrets] is learning how to negotiate consent despite being nonverbal [being a ferret and all]. Like everything she does, being the cutest thing to ever cute, it's adorable.

See, ferrets like to play quite rough, and since we brought Alec home and she has another ferret to play with, she's escalated the roughness of her play from where it was when we first brought her home, even after she healed from her surgery. Watching the two of them play looks exactly like those scenes in cartoons where you see a tangle of limbs poking out every-which-way with no actual identifiable bodies, and there's a lot of teeth on necks and the like. It has a fascinating rhythm to it which I can't quite explain right now.

They also like to play with me in exactly the same way, roughly as though my hand and forearm were a ferret to play with. I think Parker at least has decided that the fleshy area between my thumb and index finger is my "neck" for these purposes, and that's usually what she goes for when she tries to bite me.

The interesting part I've noticed recently is how she bites me. The first time she gets me, she'll completely freeze with her teeth just barely touching flesh, as though waiting to see how I'll react. If I continue to play, or even just stay still, the next time she'll bite harder. Around the third or fourth time it's usually enough to cause a bit of pain, but if I yelp and jerk my hand away she backs off. Actually, she usually backs off on the rough play entirely for a bit, but then will come back at a less bitey/less strong bitey level.

shield_toad111 once told me about a technique for training puppies not to bite too hard involving yelping and then leaving and sulking if they bite you enough to hurt . . . that this is how they would learn their limits when playing with other puppies in their pack. I'd kind of decided to try something similar as soon as we brought Parker home, and in retrospect I think it had a positive effect, as she now seems to be actively seeking those signals from me.

Obviously, words are less ambiguous and allow you to negotiate before you reach the limit rather than when you're at or have just crossed a line, but it's really neat that my ferret has developed a model for determining what sort of play is appropriate in the moment and minimizing harm while playing in the way she prefers. And of course if I don't want to play bitey-tickly in the first place, I can decline to respond when she bounces around excitedly at my feet, and she'll find other entertainment.

Addendum: [A quick shower tells me I should add this after all] Parker does not represent the Gold Standard for enthusiastic consent by any stretch of the imagination. But something to think about: are you worse than my two-year-old ferret at making sure the people you're playing with want to play with you, want to play with you in the way you're trying to play with them, and are still enjoying playing with you in the way you're playing with them?

Originally posted at (comment count unavailable comment[s]|comment there)
ten the hard way, dice

Lenses: Background for the Confused

I can already feel the blank stares of the people who haven't known me in one of my prior lens-wearing periods and haven't discussed these things with any of the fairly small number of other people out there who use them. So here's the background on what's going on.

Nifty things you can do to eyeballs using rigid gas permeable lenses...Collapse )

In summary: they can do really cool things with rigid lenses to make your eyes work better even when the lenses are out, and you don't have to worry about them screwing up with a laser and making things both worse and uncorrectable. (They've probably improved that failure rate enough I should look into it again, but when it was new those numbers weren't making me happy.)

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ten the hard way, dice

Well, Now I've Gone and Done It (Lenses, Day 2)

I voted with my impatience and decided to go ahead and do the lens thing. Even if this turns out to have been a poor choice, at least this time I won't regret procrastinating it for another year when I had a chance to do it.

Yesterday wasn't too bad. I awoke with kind of mediocre vision, but good enough that I could be fairly functional for an hour or so before it really got to me, then switched into some glasses which we believe to be -2.0 diopters. I didn't do too much that involved reading, because I spent a fair amount of the day with pretty blurry vision, but I could mostly get by. It was actually less bad than I expected.

This morning marks day two. My eyes are now uneven, with (surprisingly) the right eye having significantly better vision than the left. I'm typing uncorrected right now, and I know that I'm primarily using my right eye for reading, which is kind of uncomfortable and probably going to lead to a lot of strain and headaches, especially since my vision is a bit blurry even in that eye. It also will make switching to low-power glasses awkward, because the ones I have at these powers are balanced between the eyes, and I probably need something in the -2 to -3 range in the left, and probably only about a -1 in the right right now.

Hopefully as things get worse they'll also even out, but today's likely to be a day for a lot of radio or mindless TV or such that don't really require a lot of looking at things, or something.


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regency cards

Found My Contacts!

Finally found my old contact lenses, which I've been searching for since Thanksgiving because I'd decided to return to wearing them, partly because my glasses prescription isn't strong enough anyway, and partly because I hate not being able to lie with the side of my head against something when I'm awake because my glasses interfere and it's annoying.

Also, my life is different enough in terms of my tending to go to sleep in a more intentional way that I'm less concerned about missing nights like I used to a lot, and I'm not doing anything important enough that I can't afford to lose a few days to complete inability to see as my eyes readapt to the lenses.

Finally, I'm kind of hoping that the forced ritual of dealing with the lenses every night and morning will help me to be more consistent with other things like hair care that are a bit more procrastinatable. If it works, this could be beneficial to my getting more done every day and being healthier.

The less good news is I found them now rather than shortly after getting back. I leave on Thursday to visit family and friends for the holiday season (I don't know exact details, fixed locations are Westchester, NY and Baltimore, I don't know if I'll be able to fit you in but I probably wish I could, feel free to contact me privately to discuss.).

As I recall, the 2nd and 3rd days after I start on the lenses are the ones where I'm almost completely useless, being unable to see with or without glasses for most of the day. It'll probably be frustrating for a couple days after that, but I'm not really sure. There's also a slight chance that they won't work right at all, which won't have any negative consequences except that I won't be able to see well until I give up and give my eyes a couple of days to get back to normal for the glasses to work again.

I'm likely to want to have some glasses with me for late evenings, though I don't know which, or even if I have anything appropriate in the heap [totally not a stack, which I said first] of random old glasses I have for this purpose. There's a limit to how many glasses I'm willing to tote around with me while traveling (that limit is probably 2 pair).

So I'm trying to figure out: do I put the lenses in tonight, or do I procrastinate starting them until early January.

Again, my eye doctor assures me there's no safety concern (they night not have the desired effect, but they can't hurt me), but I could be left unable to make out any sort of detail outside of about 6" from my face for a few days. Actually, I'm kind of guaranteed that effect, but I might get that without coming out the other side with normal vision all the time.

Originally posted at (comment count unavailable comment[s]|comment there)
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ten the hard way, dice

Still agonizing over my hair

So I'm still trying to figure out what I want to do about my hair, and I'm finding it hugely stressful. I've accepted that my hair is pretty curly (and the extent to which it zig-zags rather than curling is significant, but doesn't look any different to a casual observer and probably doesn't make much difference in either how it should be treated or what styles will have what effect), and that I can like it that way. I've learned ways of caring for it that it seems to like and that are less stressful to my hands and arms than how I used to care for it. That's all great.

Cut for length...Collapse )

[Preemptively, I do not want any discussion here on things to do with no-longer-attached hair after cutting. Any comments on that topic will be immediately frozen and the commenter banned and possibly untrusted/defriended until I stop being angry at them. I'm not kidding around here. I don't care how much I love you.]

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ten the hard way, dice

That was weird

[Post about my thorough physical search by the TSA still to come when I get around to editing the quick thing I wrote in the airport when I didn't have good internet access to post...]

Wednesday, shortly before leaving to fly to NY to visit my family for the long weekend, I went out to check the mail and discovered a memo from my local housing association. It stated that they would be conducting unit inspections today, and that I should call or email to set up an appointment time. It further stated that if nobody would be home to allow them in, we could leave a labeled key at the office to facilitate entry, and that if we didn't do so they would drill out the lock and then we'd need to come during business hours to pick up a new key. It further reminded us that pets had to be secured for the inspectors.

My first thought was something along the lines of "I'm so glad we're coming back Sunday; if we'd, say, left Tuesday and gone for a week we would probably have returned to a drilled-out lock and a citation for loose cats hiding in the closet from the strangers who could have attacked them.

The stated reason for the inspection is "an increasing number of telephone calls from concerned residents regarding community safety related matters and complaints against unit occupants pertaining to same".

I sent them an email informing them I'd be home and available to let someone in any time after noon, and inquiring about more details of the inspection so I could move furniture around preemptively to make things easier for the inspector. I also inquired whether there had been a specific complaint against me, and, if so, what it was, or whether they were inspecting all the units. They informed me they were inspecting all units, and would be by around noon.

Well, they just stopped by. Someone knocked on the door. I opened it partially and he identified himself as being from the office and doing inspections. I allowed him into the front hall.

He asked me if I owned the unit. I responded that I rent. He asked for my name and telephone number, which I provided him (the association has them on record anyway, so, ummm, ok...). He thanked me and left. I'm not sure he even glanced around the living room/dining room/kitchen, and didn't look at the bedrooms or bathrooms at all.

So I'm left wondering what the hell that was all about. Any ideas? Only thing I can think of is that they were looking for illegal immigrants.

Originally posted at (comment count unavailable comment[s]|comment there)
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