Made it

Aug. 30th, 2007 08:07 pm
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
Well. This trip has gone surprisingly smoothly! I am now back at my parents' place having achieved pretty much everything I planned up to this point. things I need to write about )
I am not going to catch up with nearly two weeks worth of LJ, so comment with anything you really need me to see. Email me or call me either on my mobile or at the parents' number, especially if you would like to meet up in the next couple of days. The plan is not too rigid for a few days, but probably I'll be in Cambridge tomorrow and some of Saturday, then in Brighton over the weekend, then back in London Sunday evening.

I'm planning to spend all of Sunday evening in the Pembury; the board games evening will be happening, and several cool people are going to be there. So do come along if you would like to see me and meet lots of lovely people.

After that I am going to be dashing around again for a bit, but only within England, so it's a bit less intense than it has been so far. Looking forward to seeing [ profile] syllopsium and [ profile] loreid.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I've been so distracted by all the gossip-related stuff going on recently that I've forgotten to update my booklog. So have reviews of:

Rebecca Wells: Divine secrets of the Ya-Ya sisterhood
Zora Neale Hurston: Their eyes were watching God

Right now I am attempting to read a classic Swedish YA novel, Frans Bengtsson's Röde Orm (the literal translation of the name is Red serpent, but the English title is The Long Ships). It's fun, and it has Vikings. But it's slow going, at least partly because it's written in an intentionally archaic style.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I've been bad at posting mainly because I let myself get intimidated by a backlog of book reviews. That was foolish. Now I'm going to remedy matters by posting the reviews I have written for the last couple of months, even though there are a couple still missing.

Ursula Le Guin: City of Illusions
GB Edwards: The book of Ebenezer Le Page (reread of one of my favourite books in the world ever)
Gwen Raverat: Period Piece
Samuel R Delany: Nova

Still to come: Joan Aiken: Blackground and Charles Frazier: Cold Mountain.

OK, now I've got those off my conscience I should find a chance to talk about my life!
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
Catching up on reviewing the books I read during the Passover / Easter break. I'll post the first two now to bump the slightly embarrassing post off the top of my journal!

Jan Morris: Last letters from Hav
Kate Atkinson: Human Croquet

Still to come: Ursula Le Guin: City of Illusions; Joan Aiken: Blackground.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I should update. For once my silence is because I've been busy, rather than because I've been displacing too much. So, in the last few days:

Shabbat. Hanging out with [ profile] ploni_bat_ploni. Purim (two megillah readings, dressing up, giving out eatables, a party). Being relatively useful and productive at work and with shul stuff (in spite of having discovered a new-old highly addictive game). Making some progress on my resolution to do some exercise. Seeing The Queen with PbP (note the italics!).

I need to process photos to write about Purim, and collect links and order my thoughts a bit to write the film review. I'm gradually clawing my way up to taking charge of my life again properly, which means not staying up past my bedtime doing non-urgent stuff (or ideally, anything at all). So just a summary to let you know I'm alive. And yes, I am reading my friends page, but commenting and emails are still in pending pile when it comes to staying on top of things.
liv: A woman with a long plait drinks a cup of tea (teapot)
Wow. I so have the coolest friends list ever. I post something whiny (locked because it's whining about work), and I'm in a really prickly mood and I start by ruling out the easiest ways of expressing sympathy and saying I don't want to hear from you unless you have something useful to say. I come back the next day and I have more than a dozen really wonderful comments.

Comments from people who cheer me up just by being there. Distractions, which are exactly what I need when I'm feeling down. Really sound, useful practical advice. Phone calls from people I care about. Supportive messages from people who are themselves coping uncomplainingly with much worse situations than anything I'm stressing about.

Also, my friends page is full of all kinds of good stuff, which is nothing to do with the fact that I was being emo on Wednesday, but it's really making me smile to read through it. There's a lot I want to respond to, either with comments or with my own spin-off posts, so the generally high quality of my friendslist is also a little frustrating because I can't engage with everyone properly. (I'm also frustrated because I'm missing a large proprotion of the friends page, I'm reading only my default filter and often just the posts, skimming the discussions.) But mostly it's really pleasing to know such erudite and witty and sensitive and articulate and generally wonderful people.

I have also, I think, set things up so I can post from email. Things like this post shouldn't wait until I next have LJ time, which could well be Sunday or Monday. It's not that I'm not allowed to read LJ from work, I don't think anybody is monitoring my usage, particularly, it's just that if I open LJ it will distract me for an hour at least, so it's better not to do that when I'm meant to be working! Anyway, this is a test to see if sending an email to the LJ posting system actually works as it should (other people's experience has suggested that it might mess up the formatting, but as long as it works, that's something).

Not a meme

May. 21st, 2006 04:46 pm
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I have a million things I want to post about, so I'm going to summarize rather drastically. And to make it a bit more interesting, I'm going to write the summary as if I were other people from my friends list.

what I might post )
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
Mainly, this is to express how very, very grateful I am to everyone who's sent me emails and LJ comments in the last few days. I really appreciate you, and I can't really sit down and write to everyone individually until I get online at home. I'm realizing that that might take weeks, probably a minimum of two weeks. So in the meantime, thank you all for reminding me that I'm not in fact the only person in the world. It's helping a lot, more than I could explain even if I had plenty of time to write about it at great length.

Today I bought a kettle, yay me. And tried to get some sort of order in my ideas about the project I'm starting on tomorrow. It's amazing how hard it is to think without a pencil and paper or a computer in front of me!

I don't know if work starting will mean less online time or more, really. But it will mean less time staring at the clock and waiting for the day to end. And the possibility of hot meals, which I'm definitely looking forward to.

Thanks for being there, friends list. You're making all the difference, even if I'm not in a position to reply individually.


Apr. 1st, 2006 09:39 am
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I've seen a lot of posts on my friends list this year with warnings that the posters don't like April Fools day and will not appreciate any pranks. I'm rather saddened that people need to make these kinds of posts. Do otherwise sensible adults really think it's amusing to play cruel pranks on their friends? Spoof news articles is one thing, but actual personal pranks seem like the kind of thing that belongs in the realm of primary school bullying.

I'm rather relieved to see that LJ is doing something obviously silly, rather than anything actually annoying or deceptive. Considering that they announced the introduction of ads as a past April Fools joke, and now they're actually in the process of introducing ads, anything on the level of some of their past unfunny and vaguely plausible pranks would be in pretty poor taste.

Anyone like to restore my faith in humanity?
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
My friends list is full of really interesting posts, and big life-change announcements, both of which I want to reply to. However, my mother has guests, (even this 5 minutes online is stolen from my social obligations), and with one thing and another I'm not going to get online properly until Saturday afternoon. Boo.

Let's not even think about how many emails I owe, and replies to comments. Also, the combination of the tail end of a cold with very cold weather with running for trains (yes, I'm stupid, I spent that extra three minutes reading LJ this morning instead of leaving the house) means that I haven't been able to breathe terribly well all day.

Consider this a summary of the affectionate thoughts I'm sending in multiple directions, but don't have time to translate into words and type right now.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I've just spent three hours fiddling and power cycling and stressing trying to get our internet connection to work. This may or may not be connected to the fact that Dad's computer is having serious power problems and blowing lots of fuses. Maman is ranting that computers are more trouble than they're worth and we were better off with card indexes and typewriters and we're going to bankrupt ourselves upgrading obsolete and malfunctioning machines...

Anyway, as you can see, I'm online right now so it's working again, but that was stress I didn't need when I'm in the middle of delicate job negotiations. And the other annoying consequence is that I don't have time to contact all the people I was planning to contact this evening. Sorry especially to [ profile] pseudomonas; I suck for letting you down two days in a row.

But anyway, let me just say globally, thank you so much for all your really helpful comments on my last (locked) post. You are absolutely wonderful friends and counsellors, and I continue to be grateful for how well my life goes with your collective support.
liv: Bookshelf labelled: Caution. Hungry bookworm (bookies)
Author: Barbara Pym

Details: (c) Hilary Walton 1986 (based on an original by Barbara Pym 1970-1972); Pub Grafton 1987; ISBN 0-586-07365-5

Verdict: An academic question is rather depressing.

Reasons for reading it: I found it on the shelf when I was looking for something else, and stumbled into reading it. Which was a bit silly as I have lots of other stuff I want to read more, but hey, it's short, so I've only wasted two short commutes and two tea breaks worth of reading time.

How it came into my hands: Can't honestly remember; I, or my parents, or possibly my other grandmother, picked it up from a charity shop at some point.

detailed review )
While I'm posting, I should mention that the new security measures for excluding possibly malicious CSS have broken my journal even worse than I was expecting. So for now I'm using [ profile] cmshaw's very well written, but rather plain, Widelines style. And that will probably be the case for a while, because I have a million more urgent things to do at the moment than redesign my journal.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I've friended a whole bunch of people I know slightly. Some through Support, some because they've friended me / and or comment on my posts, some people I've met briefly at parties, some because we have mutual friends and LJ is good at creating connections. My flist feels a little unwieldly at 125; 80 to 100 seems optimal to me personally. But then again, I don't have much I need to do at the moment, and meeting new cool people seems like a good use of my spare time.

So, hi new people. Have some virtual tea (or other virtual beverage if you're one of those tea-hating perverts). Welcome.

The disclaimer bit )

And meanwhile, here is a comment thread for people to introduce themselves (to the rest of the friendslist, if as in many cases I already know who you are). Or ask me a question or two if you want to know something about me. There are no bad questions on this journal, though I might have to be careful about answering if the answer affects other people.

Of course, there's no prohibition on old friends taking part as well, if you feel like it! I'm planning to do another round of the matchmaking game sometime soon, but now that my friends list is scarily huge, it may take a while.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I have several long thinky posts in my head, but also things to do apart from posting to LJ. But just a note to remind me so I don't forget to talk about:
  • Religion and science
  • Gathering together some of the discussion about Narnia and the problem of Susan
  • I don't really have a short title for this, but I want to talk about how Aboriginal culture was presented to me when I was in Australia and how I feel about that and the implications for race relations. It's going to be tricky to talk about without offending people too, and my ideas are hazy anyway.
  • News update on all the people I saw on my trip

    And since there isn't much content to this post, have a link to the most inappropriate advert ever (and yes, it's genuine, not a parody). Thanks to [ profile] dot_cattiness.
  • Misc notes

    Aug. 25th, 2005 06:27 pm
    liv: Table laid with teapot, scones and accoutrements (yum)
    I never found the piece of paper with my crucial information. But I was able to reconstruct the searches I did to look for a B&B and identify the correct place where I do, in fact, have a booking.

    Last night, someone I'm very fond of but whom I hadn't talked to in ages messenged me. This made me very happy indeed.

    I need a few more icons, I think. One to cover general geekiness, as opposed to linguistics- and biology-related geekiness. I think one for pretty things and culture, other than the alphabets one I use for that purpose at the moment, and possibly a separate one for music. I could consider one for travelling and tourism, but it would probably end up being a picture of a specific place which isn't really what I'm after. And one for talking about food.

    For the last category, [ profile] monanotlisa took a photo of the high tea we (Mona, [ profile] darcydodo and I) enjoyed in San Francisco. She made me an über professional icon which I'm not using because I don't like looking at pictures of me in profile. But instead I made this icon from her photo. Comments and constructive criticism welcome.

    Also, I've put up reviews of Neil Gaiman: American Gods and Bruce Sterling: Zeitgeist.
    liv: In English: My fandom is text obsessed / In Hebrew: These are the words (words)
    So it's insanely hot and humid outside, to the extent that I'm not really prepared to venture out while I'm fasting. Instead I'm staying in with the air conditioning and catching up with LJ. (I've basically not been around for a week.)

    [ profile] blackherring is sitting beside me writing a Megillah. We read through Lamentations together last night; Jeremiah really doesn't pull punches. And we got things slightly in the wrong order, so straight from reading that into maariv (the evening service): For God is merciful to forgive sin and not destroy...

    While I'm having a quiet day at home with LJ, a couple of book reviews that people might be interested in:

    Vladimir Nabokov: Pale Fire
    William Goldman: The color of light
    liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
    [ profile] pseudomonas is the best badger geek in the world ever! He's set up wireless internet so I can borrow my Dad's connection at any time. I'm back online, and life is wonderful. Everyone should be extra nice to [ profile] pseudomonas for me whenever you next encounter him!

    *bouncebouncebouncebounce* Wow, that really feels like having enough food again after a long period of starvation.


    Jul. 8th, 2005 05:09 pm
    liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
    So I have received a letter to the following effect:
    Dear Dr [livredor]

    I am very pleased to let you know that the Senatus Academicus has considered the report of the Examining Committee on your Thesis and decided to grand you the degree of PhD.

    Yours sincerely &c
    I'm going to Dundee to graduate at the beginning of next week. The ceremony is very much along the same lines as the faux-mediaevalism of the notification letter, complete with entirely anachronistic Latin, but hey, it should be fun. Getting there is going to be interesting, I suspect; I have booked train journeys that avoid London, but it might be awkward all the same.
    Less dramatically, have book reviews of:
    -David Baddiel: The secret purposes
    -Joanna Trollope: A passionate man
    liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
    Gah. I still don't have enough time online. I really, really miss all my people, I can tell you. Brief update: I've been spending more time with [ profile] blackherring and [ profile] pseudomonas, which was really lovely and somewhat made up for being so much cut off from my online social life. We spent Friday in Ely, Saturday doing relaxing shabbat-y stuff, chatting and cuddling, and Sunday being touristy in Cambridge with [ profile] lethargic_man. Apart from that, just hanging out with my parents and sister, making slow progress towards getting my life sorted out, and pining for the internet and the people I only talk to via LJ and email.

    I have been catching up with my backlog of book reviews by writing them offline and waiting to pounce on LJ and post them. So, if you're interested, here are my thoughts on:
    Nick Hornby: About a boy
    Keri Hulme: The bone people
    Cynthia Voigt: The runner

    To follow: David Baddiel: The Secret purposes and Joanna Trollope: A passionate man.

    Also, my domain forwarding system seems to be passing on all the spam and somehow losing all the real mail. If you have recently sent anything to my vanity domain, please resend to my gmail address, which is rachelgb.

    I am so tempted to stand my sister up and stick around playing on LJ (while Dad is in London and the computer is free), but I am not in fact that mean. So I'm about to head into town to see an arty French film with her. Yay sis.
    liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
    I have lots of stuff I want to write about, including four book reviews and an account of a lovely day and a half with [ profile] blackherring and [ profile] pseudomonas. However, I didn't get to the computer until now so it's probably best not to start series of long posts.

    I owe lots of people LJ comments and email, and I'm not really going to be able to deal with this when I don't get online until 10:30 or later maybe every other day at most. I am however taking steps to remedy this highly unsatisfactory situation (with lots of help from [ profile] pseudomonas). So I will be back in touch soon. In the meantime, continue phoning if you need me; anything else is taking days for me to see and might not get a reply at all. And general apologetic and affectionate thoughts go out in various directions.

    Short version: *waves* to [ profile] secutatrix. My sister is a brilliant cook. My latest stupidity injury is healing nicely. Ely is very pretty. I love my friends very very very much, and having [ profile] pseudomonas and [ profile] blackherring simultaneously within hugging range is making me very happy.


    Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

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