Message Of The Day

Mon, 20 Dec 2004

22:41 [zork(~/sam/lees-deli-blt)] cat 20041220.txt

Important Google Information Pertaining to LEE'S DELI

We have technology now. How great.,+CA&oi=localr

Sun, 19 Dec 2004

06:49 [zork(~/nutella/Waffle)] cat RollingStones.txt

You can't always get what you want...

The more I think about it the more I feel that the Rolling Stones came up with the wrong lyrics. It should be "You find sometimes that you can't get what you want but you can always get what you need" (yes, I know it wouldn't scan). The main trigger for contemplating this was realising that I am both waaay too impatient and waaay too determined to take care of everything myself. No matter how many times it is proven to me that letting go leads to better things I'll still want to dictate my future. I had this demonstrated to me again when after a couple of weeks of fretting I gave up out of shear despair and was then contacted by a friend whom I had given up hope of hearing from. Now someone up there is laughing at me I am sure.

Anyway, I am heading back to Yoorp tomorrow instead of Wednesday as I need to be there to attend a funeral. The passing was not a surprise, but it was a little earlier than expected. I had seen my aunt at the recent Irish wedding and she seemed in pretty good form at the time. Things happened very quickly after that. Today I interspersed performing pre-trip housework with watching a couple of fillums selected (I thought) at random. They were Beautiful Mind and Pi. I linked the two of them by their mathematics theme but had more or less forgotten (for some reason) the mental illness link. Then I realised that both films made use of a game of Go at key points.

So, happy holidays one and all. Have a Cool Yule and I'll be back in '05.

Sun, 12 Dec 2004

03:56 [zork(~/nutella/Waffle)] cat FightClub.txt

This is NOT a rehearsal!

I had so many things I wanted to communicate. So many pearls of wisdom to impart. But it is not just life that is fleeting. The context for brilliant thinking doesn't last very long, especially on internet time. Ha ha! This slow connection occasionally makes my typos fuse words together likethis. I am becoming the Sheepman! Anyway, The Royal Tenenbaums is a freaking funny fillum. If you were to take Hotel New Hampshire (the film, not the book [yuk!]) and thrash it until you had taken out all the Washington Irving crap and left the core of whoever turned that crap book into a good film you'd be left with something that resembled the Tenenbaums. It really is that good. One of Gene Hackman's best. Even Ben Stiller couldn't ruin it. Even the truly execrable Bill Murray couldn't make a dent in it. It really is that good. After that I saw The Way Home. This is not to be confused with 《 我 的 父 亲 母 亲 》 even though the anglicised versions of the titles would suggest otherwise. Instead this is Firefly Dreams with an annoying boy instead of a bratty girl. With nowhere near as much closure (the boy is still a PITA at the end). The point I am trying to make. The whole non-linear point is that I just watched Fight Club again. I still think that this is more than one film. They could have stopped it at the point that Edward Norton makes the deal with Marla about the support groups. To that point it had been sublimely funny. After that point it would have to be excessive to keep up the momentum (and IT IS!). It would have died without someone as OTT as Tyler Durden. In contrast to most people who have seen the film I see the fighting as a mere motif to keep the excessiveness running. This time the key scene was driving the limo down the road and swinging it over into oncoming traffic to make the point that this is life NOW. That this is not a rehearsal. This scene doesn't even make it into the IMDB quotes. Maybe they just don't get it either. Maybe they're still mourning the death of the IKEA furniture. I still get a big belly laugh out of the "fight Gandhi" "fight Lincoln" scene. The sad thing is that I know I don't live as if today is my last day. I heard that "Work as if you don't need the money. Love as if you've never been hurt. Dance as if nobody's watching." quote again and I don't live up to it - except those few occasions when I really do let go. It is not as if you have to do something particularly excessive. You just have to stop being the one who holds yourself back. Someone else up there really does have amazing plans for you.

Tue, 07 Dec 2004

04:02 [zork(~/nutella/Waffle)] cat TheHomer.txt

The Horror! The Horror!

Although the walls in my apartment are pretty good I am forced to accept that my neighbour either has a new cellphone or a new ringtone. The tune is La Cucaracha. Oh, the humanity!

The crummy weather means that the pickings in the library's audiovisual room are getting quite slim. I'm making myself watch fillums that either I haven't seen in years or I was determined to see when they were released but never got around to it. In the former category I watched Bridge Over The River Kwai for the umpteenth time (but for the first time in about 10 years) and in the latter category Remains of the Day. Tonight's choice was part second category and part impulse, Tarkovsky's The Steamroller and the Violin (how could I resist such a title). As I was watching it I had the impression that if I turned the sound off then Sergei would become Andy Griffith and Sasha would become Opie. Try it and see!

Sat, 04 Dec 2004

17:20 [zork(~/nutella/Waffle)] cat FatManRules.txt

RULE VI: There is no body cavity that cannot be reached with a #14 needle and a good strong arm.

That rule springs to mind at times like this when the cold has moved from being a tickly throat to uncomfortable sinus pressure. It is not particularly painful but it would seem so logical to just dig in there and relieve the source of the discomfort. Maybe they should also bring back trepanning for those suffering from epilepsy, migraine and headaches. Let out those evil spirits.

The house rule that is most appropriate to my daily work is RULE X, or at least the spirit of that rule. The practical application would be something like "If you don't do a P450 assay you will not find an inhibitor." or "If you don't assay the mRNA you will not find an inducer." or "If you don't check recovery you will not find covalent binding." etc. I am a big believer in "Test Early. Test Often." but this doesn't endear me to the project teams. The worst of them want to stay in full ostrich-mode as otherwise they are in danger of having their goals disrupted.

Also, my landlord is insane. He wants to rip out and replace two of my windows on Monday. It'll probably be low 30's during the day and 20's at night. My apartment relies on central (building controlled) heat and I suspect that the thermostat for it is located in someone's armpit. My landlord is insane. I am going to freeze.

Fri, 03 Dec 2004

04:23 [zork(~/nutella/Waffle)] cat meme.txt

Get out of my head dammit!

Tuesday night I watched Firefly Dreams which is a really sweet film but now I can't get the "theme" tune (a fairly simple acoustic guitar piece) out of my mind. I had only just managed to edge out S&G's version of Sound of Silence (listened to several times last week) by playing Helter Skelter at high volume during the commute. Now I need to find something more catchy to displace it. Maybe I should just listen to the Ham[p]ster Dance until my head explodes.

I've been invited to give a talk at a meeting in Seattle in June. Cool!

Just checked my zork email and found a message from someone in academia asking for a program I wrote while I was at UCSF. Alas, they don't know what to do with the code and so need a binary (Windows I assume). This doesn't bode well as I only have things that use the command line.

Oh yeah... So how did I break the chain? What I actually did was to create a phase-locked loop that amplifies the signal (probably by rerouting the phase transponder through the emission array). That linkfest will now get totally out of control. Or maybe not. Whatever.

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