redders: (ekichi - bleaah)
So Seattle's at 99F right now. That's two more degrees before we break our record, and yes, this is probably nothing to you Texans/Arizonians/Californians, but uh... We don't know what air conditioning is here?

Also, the nights have been muggy and hot--it only dropped to 76 last night, which is usually high noon for Seattle--which has made for a totally awesome experience sleep-wise. I even got better rest in Belize. Perhaps because I wasn't staying in a brick apartment designed by some turn-of-the-century jerk who refused to predict global warming? Photos tomorrow possibly (I know I'm coming to the library again, that's for sure) of hottest-day-evar sights, such as red's amazing pile of sleepin' cushions set up in the narrow entryway, because the floor by my bathroom is at least ten degrees cooler than my bed.

Oh, and as I'm going to be hunkered down here for a few days... Anyone have anything I should be seeing on Internet (movies, very image-intensive sites, etc)? Anyone have recs for trashy YA books my heat-melted brain can handle (I'm almost done with the Tiffany Aching books, which aren't trashy, and are kind of taunty what with it being all about snow, and don't have any books in cue next--although I've got a stack of graphic novels I'm picking up)? Anyone know of any movies actually worth paying to see, even though, okay, I would really just be paying $10 for the honor of not being coated with sweat for a freakin' hour? Anyone want to come over and bring salad or a sandwich or something?

...because I've eaten cold beans from a can for two nights now, and am pretending that using chips to eat them means I'm not going to go out and buy an "END IS NIGH" sign or anything.
redders: (iorek!)
Well, I guess nearly everyone is enjoying similar weather, so I'll just say: I hope you all are staying warm and careful, and enjoying such winter scenery as:

-urban cross-country skiing
-grocery sleds
-semi trucks realizing "oh, maybe chains would be cool" in the middle of the road
-fleets of buses lined up on this one side-street, explaining you why you'd been staring at
-that same crazy snow-bicyclist come by four times while you wait an hour and a half for your bus.

I wound up sticking home yesterday, as it was pretty much physically impossible to get out of the neighborhood. I'm a little bummed as it cost me money, but it was safer. And a good excuse to log in twelve hours of consecutive Persona. I'll do an update post later (I'm at a boss battle that I'll likely want to talk about) but for those playing, I'm into early August.

In backlog media news, on Wednesday I finally got out to see Milk. I'm sure by now everyone's seen it, but if you haven't, go. It's one of the most timely movies I've seen--every review out there goes into that echo of this last election season, and it's true--along with being one of the more inspirational. At once it makes you kick yourself for not being more active, but reminds you that it's okay if you start late in the game. Even if you take forty years to get around to speaking up, if you do get around to it, you can still make a hell of a difference. Everyone is awesome in it, the use of footage is great, and it features the least-Elfman Danny Elfman soundtrack you will ever hear.

And in other (related) news: guys, I'm REALLY sorry about increasing the greenhouse effect, alright?
redders: (gaav)
Okay, Nordstrom's. You had better still be bringing the creepy out of backstock, and things best be at the proper level of seasonal depression by the 25th of next month, because what I found downtown this afternoon was simply unacceptable.



Seriously, every window is like this: it's as if they traded out anorexic hostility for whimsical curly-tailed foxes. And, while it's true that there were still dressers working in the main window (the one which featured the robo-dachshund last year), it looks like "mouthless fox staring soullessly at humans" seems to be the all-around theme this year. Macy's seemed a bit more promising, but I was chased away by particularly aggressive Salvation Army volunteers, so I guess I'll have to check back.

At least it was a nice day out. Yea, a bit too nice for photos without 10000% glare...

In news: you just have to respect any news organization that uses the word 'poo' in a headline. Also, robot roaches.
redders: (Waugh)
Hurrah! It's [livejournal.com profile] skylockee's birthday today, and, in this new tradition of posting-a-link-I-was-probably-going-to-post-one-day-anyway, I culled up an old memory of something on Teh Intarwebs I thought you'd find funny. This was a link I got when I was taking Microbiology in '03 or so, and it was Tragically Dead when I went to the original site. HOWEVER, the powers of bloggers have decided to bring you the magic that is THE TWELVE DAYS OF SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTIONS. Everyone, click, watch, and hilariate. And perhaps go "Noes, I just got that out of my braaaain," because I think it wound up all over Internet back then.

Hmm, I hope this doesn't make it seem like I think of the clap every time I think of you, [livejournal.com profile] skylockee...

Anyway, about plays: )

My friend and I got some killer seats with the last-minute ticket deal at the theater, though: if you're under 25 (yes, I know, rather random idea of the 'student discount'), you can buy day-of tickets for $20, and they give you the best seats available. So, while you'd have to spend $22 for "meh" seats ahead-of-time online, you can get nice ones just showing up... We're probably going to see West Side Story when it starts up in a few weeks, also. You know. As that is actually a musical...
redders: (Waugh)
Ah, I keep forgetting: Box is the Best Robot Ever In Anything, Ever. And I've loved a lot of robots!

News:

-Surprise! It's my ear in a box! Well, okay, more than an ear, even. You know I'll be the five hundredth person to make a joke about this to our DHL driver.

-Okay, who wants to play "Why do you even need to really research this?" with me? Study shocker: moldy homes cause asthma!

-This is local news that no one else may care for, but in another shocker (and another reason to be pissed about the parade being moved from Broadway), this year's Pride parade will be a one-day event, thanks to the organizers going broke after moving the festival to Seattle Center. The parade was moved last year (I didn't make it to that one, either, so I suppose I can't judge what the atmosphere is like) mainly, apparently, due to want for parking--which, in my mind, is just silly. Get more buses, get more shuttles--don't hyper-commercialize the parade, move it from the gayborhood, and go bankrupt.

-And in happier gay Seattle news: domestic partnerships are virtually a done deal in the state, having passed state Senate. It's quite likely to pass the House, as well, but--as the article points out--it's uncertain when it will be heard. Slow wheels as ever in Washington--folks might remember that gay-rights legislation that finally passed last year after thirty years of getting shot down.

Surprise, I did no work on my paper this entire week. I suppose I'll be freaking out at the last minute on Tuesday, wondering what I did all these days... Then I'll only write half of it, wind up replying to someone's offhand remark about Watson hugging baby harp seals or something with a story, and finish the rest of the essay an hour before class on Wednesday. Hard times!

No eclipse for me, either... Cloudy all day, and forecast to be "well, pretty invisible" on this side of the world, anyhow. Boo to you folks with your red moons!
redders: (wandering dog)
Despite the fact that Seattle has been (in a clear challenge to the weather forecasters, who keep saying "It'll clear up at noon, we swear!") a vaguely-defined concept more than a city of late, I decided to brave potential fog-dwelling assailants and go for a wander today.

And, by wander, I mean "head down to the library, then think 'oh, I'll go to the Olympic Sculpture Park, I think I remember where the build site was!' and then spend two hours walking there."

Now I know where Watson's "war wound" came from. He was just looking for newly-opened sculpture gardens, and was too proud to ask for directions to a sculpture garden. Really, it's embarrassing!

Still, I had fun! )

So, that's the Olympic Sculpture Park, in a rush of misinformation, bad photo angles, and completely unnecessary pop culture references!
redders: (comic beef)
I've actually been back from the hometown since sometime yesterday afternoon--however, I had a fridge that needed re-stocking, mail that needed checking, and hours of sleep that needed sleeping yesterday. I had to work today (the whole reason I needed to be back in Seattle this early--I actually do have Christmas and the next two days after off, but they absolutely needed me in today) and it's only now that I've finally conquered the 300+ posts that were awaiting me... In the land of Red's friends, it appears as if it is turning out to be a wondrous and slashy season! This is as it should be.

I'll do a typical run-down on the Holiday Haul tomorrow morning (I think that something like one-hundred percent of my friendslist is already on Christmas Day, but this little Pacific Coast Timer is going to be proper and wait) but let it be known: I got a lot of awesome. I also got to pick up a number of items I'd left behind at my parents' place--including my old friend, Playstation 2! This means I can... watch DVDs on my television. It's the wave of the future! Although, now is when I realize I left all my memory cards with the ex...

Also in the hometown: I finally got my long-suffering laptop Orwell (yes, like most laptops cursed with nerd owners, he does have a name) worked on. Viruses the ex placed upon him? Erased! Orwell is now content to bring me my porn as quickly as a dial-up connection can. And Actual Orwell can enjoy rolling in his grave. Good times all around!

A week on vacation means... A week's worth of news!

- Robots seemed to be all over the place this week. Man, I logged on to the BBC at my parents' house, and the headline was basically "ROBOTS ROBOTS ROBOTS!" First off, there was the ol' perennial freak-out about robot rights. Silly British government--everyone knows robots laser first, ask for holiday pay later! Then, through that link, I found an older article celebrating the invention of these somewhat terrifying ballroom dancebots. If I were a robot, I'd sure demand my robot rights after a line like this: "In particular, it has been designed as a female - which has to respond to its human, male lead partner, rather than leading itself." Dude, can't a robot dance with whomever it pleases? I demand robot gender equality! Finally, as I've already established that Richard Dean Anderson is a long-time reader of mine, I think he'll be pleased to learn that a robot baby harp seal won a top robotics award. This actually isn't the main reason I post this link. No, the credit for making this story post-worthy goes entirely to the robot spoon-feeder, which I am somewhere near 97% certain will one day break the chains of servitude and go for your eyes.

- Fun with science was also to be had this week! This first link goes out to [livejournal.com profile] rollerdragon, still trapped in the hometown: a species of moth in Madagascar has been found to feed on the tears of birds. Apparently it is quite common for moths to drink the tears of larger, more placid animals such as deer, but the bird-feeding is new to scientists. Make sure to scroll down and check out that proboscis!* Also, look at that cover of The New Scientist on the side. Party Ferrets to the Rescue! This is adorable and all the more hilarious for another news story, which I link to below. The second link is the you-knew-I'd-post-it CJD story: researchers have discovered a molecule that binds to the prion that causes scrapie and is successful in filtering the disease in hamster blood. No word on how successful this will be with CJD and human blood--animal testing, proudly not really proving much of anything since Sometime BC.

- This week also starred our old friend, miscellaneous wackiness. I actually heard about this first story on NPR, so chances are, most of you have heard about it as well. Nevertheless, posted for my own amusement, here's the BBC coverage on a showdown between Greek monks. The second story was also brought to my attention in the hometown--it was on a ticker on CourtTV. Hoorah for tickers, as they always bring bzuh?-worthy news: mother claims that the family's pet ferret ate her daughter's toes, and not, as her husband claims, the family's pit bull puppy. This article still doesn't clarify the story enough to suit my needs! I mean, either way, the parents are going to be charged with negligence. Even this coverage from a local television station doesn't help much--though it does provide the quote-of-the-day, care of a pit bull saleswoman: "He didn't chew on anything while he was with me. Out of all of them (in the litter), he was the least chewy."

- Finally, I bring holiday cheer. For the second year running, I am proud to report the occurrence of Santa-beating. And, even more cheerful: a man dies while dressed as Santa during a holiday party. I mean, cripes. Imagine being one of those kids.

I also have one extra link I've been holding on to. I think I felt as if it isn't the typical sort of thing I post when I found it. However, the story has been in my head all week--half because it is just so utterly tragic, and half because it is so horrible to imagine being trapped in such a manner. Anyway, there were twelve deaths reported in connection to last week's storm here in Seattle. One of them, the death of voice actress Kate Fleming (who worked primarily in audio books, under the name Anna Fields) was so insanely tragic. In a neighborhood with storm drains residents had long-complained were faulty, Fleming was caught in her basement. She called her long-time partner, who ran home and was unable to open the door. Ultimately, Fleming drowned in their home.

I really didn't mean to end on that. But I guess if anyone is good for ending on a down-note, it's me.

Posts tomorrow about Christmas cheer, I promise!

*Red will only discover much later, after spell-checking this entry, how porny that sounded.
redders: (El Santo)
I might learn, upon posting this, that cities far more major than Seattle have far larger department stores with far more frightful Christmas window displays. However, this is the third year running that I've been meaning to make a post about the Nordstrom's window displays in downtown Seattle--and this year, I've finally managed to both take photos and scrape together the energy to write about them.

Nordstrom's is a remarkable department store for two reasons: one, it's pretty much Seattle's only home-grown department store, and two, they--on a stunning yearly basis--have the most depressed, anorexic, and neurotic mannequins ever to take part in a holiday. Every display seems to need a short story dedicated to how these people wound up in the position they are in. To make matters better, this year The Bon Marche Macy's--located only a block away--decided to step up to the "weird mannequin holiday" plate. While their displays are a lot less depressing, a few of them made good pictures.

So, without further delay, here's a walk in downtown Seattle. Warning: this is pretty dang image-intensive. )

Also today: I was returning the over-due SH collection to the downtown branch of the library. I've never used the book-drop there, and, while I should have expected something from the vertigo-inducing ultra-modern branch, I was not prepared for what happened. I pushed the book into what I assumed to be a metal flap into a drop-box... and the panel slid up, revealing a lighted conveyor belt, and a robot voice began cheerfully announcing, "THANK YOU FOR RETURNING YOUR BOOK TO THE SEATTLE PUBLIC LIBRARY SYSTEM!" It kept talking to me, but I decided retreating was the best tactic for dealing with an evil robot book-drop.

I'm sorry. If I have to deal with robot libraries, I must demand my flying car. My own laser gun may also be required.
redders: (H/W - Newspaper)
Woot! And woot part two!

Naturally, the Senate race in this corner of the States was no contest. Of course Maria Cantwell was going to win--even the GOP stopped giving McGavick campaign funding in the middle of the race, as they saw it was pretty much a waste of money. So we're still representing one eighth of the females in Senate out here--and both Democrats, natch. This was the off-year for the governor race. Thank god. That's always a parade of insanity and misplaced ballots. No truly exciting initiatives this year, either--we just had the usual estate tax and land use hoo-hah that we always do, and a bonus initiative about utility companies using more renewable energy.

I had a wacky dream last night (it's the time of year for it or something, if my friends list is anything to go by)--I was playing Contact, and suddenly part of the game was answering these trivia questions. And they weren't easy ones, like you might expect in a game. Oh no, they were all complicated six-possibility multiple choice, and all the questions were nonsensically difficult... The only one I can remember now was, "In the song, 'Nutrition! Nutrition!' that the FDA wrote in 1970, what was the smallest particle of food?" and the only two answers I can remember are "three black pepper kernels" and "a handful of brown wheat." I mean... what? What is this song? Why does my brain come up with these things? Maybe I'm just stressed out about school...

The Wii is coming out soon! I actually don't think I can afford it until the holidays, but I'm still pretty excited. Hey, [livejournal.com profile] shinkuu, you should be a correspondent for your New York trip!
redders: (koyaanisqatsi-buildings)
I went to go see the Bodies exhibit on Wednesday, and it was endlessly awesome. I want to recommend it to everyone, to say "hey, go see it when it comes to your town," but apparently it'll only be in Seattle, LA, LV, and NYC. Which in my honest, I'm-not-trying-to-taunt-the-flist-opinion, is simply insane. Seriously now, how did we get picked? Like, over San Francisco, Boston, or Chicago? Seattle, as a general rule, is a cultural hinterland--yes, bands tend to come on tour here (out of a sense of "well, it's the largest place in them Northwest Territories") but our museums leave a lot to be desired. I suppose the only reason we did get it at all is because the more-infamous Gunter von Hagen's work, Bodyworlds, is in Boston...

Anyway, everyone should at least take a gander at the website. The gyst of the exhibit is this: here are some real bodies, preserved with acetone. Check out these dead people playing football. I wasn't so into the poses of some of the cadavers, and I definitely recommend skipping the audio tour (especially if, like me, you've already done anatomy courses and don't want to be seriously bored by some guy telling you that smoking can cause CANCER!!) but the sheer beauty of some of the preserved organs on display was astounding. I think the cardiovascular exhibit was my favorite--I mean, to just see, first-hand, how densely vascularized the human kidney is...

Interestingly, the portion of the exhibit with preserved fetuses offered you the option to "bypass," cutting through to the next exhibit. I love America, for the ability to be Totally Cool With Adult Dead People, and But to Freak Out At A Fetus. I guess seeing a preserved baby with no head could be a little disarming, though. I'd just imagine it to be no more so than an intestine filled with ascaris lumbricoides.

Other than that, my life remains the same exciting flux of riding buses and sleeping on sofas that it has been these past weeks. I think I'm pretty set on working myself to an early grave just to stay in Seattle, and I want to find an apartment soon. Say all you want about generosity, I need out of this situation almost as much as I did the last.

Oh, and here's a random link gathered while looking to see if I had the name of our nematode friend, a. lumbricoides, spelled correctly: parasitic worms drive grasshoppers to suicide.
redders: (hungry - alilbtdii)
Like most lazy, can't-be-arsed-to-cook city folk, I have a Cheapass Teriyaki Stand that I can practically call my own. One's favored teriyaki stand is never really the best teriyaki place in town, nor the cheapest. Often it's not even the closest--it's just one you sort of fell into frequenting, one day realizing "Christ, this is the fiftieth time I've ordered number eleven. Whelps, guess there's no stopping now."

Anyway, my teriyaki stand happens to be the second-closest to my house. I was there this afternoon ordering my usual (#6, prawn kabobs) when I noticed they had spruced the place up a bit. Where there was once white paint, it was orange; where there was once those dollar scrolls with dragons, there were Tasteful Black and White Prints of Paris. All in all, it was an acceptable remodeling--I'm not there for the looks, after all.

Then I realized that it was gone. The greatest decoration ever. Gone.

Above one of the small tables, there used to be a framed sign--printed out on an older black and white printer--that read "Bill and Melinda Gates ate at this table, March 2001."

Now it is no more. Alas, Bill Gates--Teriyaki Plus has remodeled you away. I cannot help but feel a teeny bit sad.

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