animated black mage

Writer's Block: Taking a trip with Mrs. Tibble

What name would you give to your car or bicycle, and why?

Most of my cars have had names. The Jeep is COMRADE JEEP! (subnames: The Red Menace, The Jeep of the People) 

My explorer was named Gypsy (She was also flamboyantly red, and liked to wander)

My old 74 Buick Regal was the Sherman. (Dark green, and was tanklike) 

Etc etc etc.

I dont know if I could name a bike though. I'm the one powering a bike. It is a mere extension of me. A car though... that's got an engine, a mechanical soul. 
animated black mage

Writer's Block: Educated guess

How has your education prepared you for your current or intended career? Do you wish you had taken a different path academically? Would you consider transferring or going back to school?

Oh hell no. I'm good at what I do, but I can't thank the education system at all for that. Not only is what I did learn out of date and no longer applicable, but the attributes I use (both analytical and non-linear) are ones I had apart from (and one might say "in spite of") the education I took part in.

Of course, I do wish I had taken a different path academically. This whole IT consulting business pays the bills and keeps a roof over the head and food on the plate... but I don't do it because I love it. I do it because I'm good at it.

I'd much rather have a degree in history, with a masters from the school of Strategic Studies here at the U of C.

But I can't eat with a degree like that.

And no, I dont think I'll go back to school for anything serious. How I learn, and how the education system teaches, are rather incompatible. I realized that the last time through. I should concentrate on my strengths when it comes to learning.

So, I craft disaster recovery solutions, I work powerful technological voodoo. I pay the bills, and I have a bookshelf full of history books to read in my spare time.

animated black mage

Secure historical communication

Something occurred to me just now whilst I was in the shower.

(I do some of my best thinking in the shower)

Let's go back into history for a moment, and take a couple of fictional countries.

Lets say... I, Brendicus, Supreme Potentate of Brendanistan, receive a diplomatic letter from Queen Juli of the Julites, basically saying
"Dear Esteemed and Supreme Potentate,

Couldn't help but notice my catapults are looking a little dusty lately, and I happened to hear that Lord Enemy, of EnemyBurg, was insulting our mutual god. What say you and I pool our forces together, take a run at the border, throw a few thousand troops at the problem, and see which ones don't die? Then we shall have dinner in the ruins of his palace.

Hope to see you on the border,

Queen Juli of the Julites, mistress of all she surveys, protector of the makeup mines of MACland, etc etc, flourish, titles, etc."

I take a look at the letter, delivered by her trusted vizier. It has her seal on it, unbroken.

How do I verify that its her seal, and not a forgery? Who is my guy, in a historical context, that can tell me "yep, that the Julite seal, alright. Looks valid to me, boss!" ... or the guy who can tell me what the Julite seal looks like in the first place.

I do wonder how secure communication (within the context and limits of the time, of course), was achieved.
animated black mage


Been cursing the lack of decent RPGs coming out for a while.

And now all that's changing.

Me: Ok, I'm gonna get White Knight Chronicles in February, and FF13 in March.

Mass Effect 2: You sure you don't want to buy me as well?

Me: Nah, I'm ok. I liked the first one. but I'm in no hurry.

Mass Effect 2: You suuuure? *plays tantalizing trailer videos*

Me: Dammit! I really /did/ like the first one! Gimme!

Mass Effect 2: pwned.

Me: Ok, that's three games over the next three months or so. 100 hours for White Knight Chronicles. About the same for FF13 I bet... ME2 is good for what...50? Where would I find time for these.

Star Ocean - The Last Hope: Hi there. I launch in Feb too.


Gonna have to do some prioritizing of games here.

Console RPGs: when it rains, it pours.

Heavy Rain: Speaking of rain...

animated black mage

Cureall Veggie Soup

Looks like Juli has teh Pl@gu3 or something. So in order to make her feel better, I made a Vat of CureAll LazyVeggieSoup™

Chopped up a whole mess of garlic, one medium onion, sauteed both with some oil and hot paprika

Dumped the garlic and onion into a vat with 2 cartons of veggie broth (told you I was lazy)

Added one sizeable can of diced tomatoes.

Shredded 1 lb of carrots, 1 lb of celery, added to the vat.

Added 1 lb of chopped baby spuds to the bubbling vat

Added one well chopped small head of cabbage to the bubbling vat

Seasoned the vat with whole peppercorns, ground pepper, seasoning salt, more hot paprika, more garlic (moar!), a bit of thyme.

Let the vat simmer for a good while.

Serve to ill people.
animated black mage

Writer's Block: Tonight, tonight

If you celebrate Christmas, what will you do this evening? If you don't, will you still do something festive or is it just another night?

Honestly? It is just another night. I'm not being scroogey here. I'm as generous and human as the next sapiens down the line. The presents-aspect of xmas is for various kids, really. Not that I mind getting or giving gifts, but face it, there's no real sense of wonder there. A nice touch, that could just as easily exist in April as December.

The religious aspects of the holidays hold no particular draw for me. I think that's the biggest drawback as I seem to be moving towards atheistic viewpoints... there was something comforting about the traditions, even if I didn't think it made a lick of difference to whatever deity was supposedly listening.

Tonight, I will enjoy the fact that I don't have to work for a few days. I may see if Juli wants to go for a xmas lights drive (because lights displays are fun, no matter what the reason) . I will pour myself a drink or two afterwards, see if anyone's up for a game of something online, then make ready for the morrow.