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el diablo robotico

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[Oct. 18th, 2017|11:17 am]

I'm going to stop crossposting to LJ. Comments are rare, and I feel sort of uneasy talking to an empty room. I am continuing to write (sometimes) at platypus.dreamwidth.org, and I'm happy to add anyone I know there. I'll leave comments open on this, and I'll always be happy to catch up with old LJ friends.

Does anyone actually use their LJ OpenID to read/comment on Dreamwidth? I'm thinking of removing all the OpenIDs from my friends (or circle or whatever Dreamwidth calls it).

(Crossposted from Dreamwidth.)
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[Jan. 12th, 2017|04:00 pm]

I've been cleaning up my friends list, removing people I think are gone from LJ. This isn't some "comment or I will delete you" thing; if you're still active, I have no intention of unfriending you. But if you were lurking quietly and got removed, please let me know. I just felt weird giving reading access to a bunch of people who (I think) aren't here and don't care.

I'm going to keep crossposting from Dreamwidth, but if you're over there too, I'd appreciate being added (I'm platypus there too).

There's also a category of people I hope will come back someday and have no other contact information for, and I'll keep you all friended just in case. Haven't been here in a while? Got twitter, facebook, something else...? I'd love to hear from you.
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by way of an obituary [Jan. 1st, 2017|06:07 pm]

Moly Trummer-Keys, born April 1 (estimated), 1997, died January 1, 2017. She was given up by some idiot when she was a year and a half old and named "Brownie." I fell in love with the friendly, perky, tiny little tortie through the cage bars at the rescue center, and adopted her the day I moved into my first proper post-college apartment. I was 24. We were together for the next eighteen years, whether in a tiny efficiency apartment in Madison or across the country in San Diego with the addition of Ken (and then Toeffe, and then Penny).

Moly tipped the scales at around five pounds. She had two brain cells, one devoted to being petted and the other to licking things. And somehow, packed into that tiny head was the sweetest, perkiest, most lovable being I have ever met. She was dumb as a box of rocks, but she had so much personality. I'm not even sure she knew she was a cat; presented with a feather on a stick, she'd ignore the feather but happily chew the string. She diligently licked the telephone, the mirror, our noses, the stairway railing, our desktops, our pillows, and the couch, if not stopped. Her hoarse little meow was sometimes mistaken for a hiss; she loved to talk, and would eagerly hold lengthy conversations of whispered meows. (We whisper-meowed back, of course.) She had to be taught, patiently, over the course of years, that Pounce treats were in fact edible food. (But we eventually got through to her. She ate five this morning.) She liked to socialize with our heads, perhaps because they were close to her size, and would often sit on the back of the couch while we watched TV, gradually cuddling into my neck.

It was hard to pet Moly to the point where she considered herself adequately petted and did not want more, but I tried. Every morning when I woke up she'd pop up perkily, meow at me, and lead me to my desk for a petting session. God forbid I try to walk anywhere else.

For such a loving cat, she wasn't a big purrer. She had only the tiniest, breathiest purr, and it was only unleashed under very specific circumstances. Ken knew just the purr spot to scratch on the back of her head; I never quite got the hang of that one. But sometimes she'd honor me with a little rattle under her breath.

She wasn't much of a bed cat, but once, a year or so ago, I woke up to her cuddling in the crook of my neck, purring right into my ear. I didn't get up for work on time that day.

She'd been getting old for a long time; I'd always dared to hope she'd make it to 18, and then go suddenly in her sleep with no lengthy illness beforehand. And she did make it to 18 -- even to 19, with only minor ailments. On her 19th birthday, I didn't dare ask the universe for 20, but still, she fell only a few months short. That last year was hard, though, with arthritis and kidney disease and then, in late summer, cancer. Her activities were gradually curtailed until she spent all her time on her blanket and heating pad. She developed urinary tract infections, and anemia, and pressure sores on her heels. We treated as much as we could, tried to keep her happy, but finally it reached the point where it was all just too much for her.

I've had good cats. I've even had special cats. But saying goodbye to Moly is probably the hardest thing I've ever had to do. My only comfort is that it was done well -- a mobile vet came to us, and Moly had no fear, no more pain. She got to lie on her blanket, on her heating pad, in the corner where she'd decided to spend her last months. I wanted her to die in her sleep, and that's basically what happened.

But she's gone, and I miss her like I'd miss my heart, and forgive me if I'm having a hard time with new year memes. I hope 2017 has not begun as it will go on. My first dollar spent this year went to help the most beloved cat I've ever known leave this life. I hope none of this is meaningful. I'm grateful for the last months we were granted together, and for all the times in the preceding years that I said, well, I don't know how long we'll have, so I'm going to sit here and pet this cat as long as she wants. So, please, go pet a cat in memory of Moly.
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[Jun. 25th, 2015|11:47 am]

A month ago, I decided to see how long it would take me to see a license plate from every state. This is what I've got so far:


Not bad, huh? Although Indiana was a U-Haul, so that sort of felt like cheating. I'm still keeping my eye out for a proper Indiana plate.

Ken saw Maine yesterday, but I didn't, so it doesn't count.

Still missing:

Iowa Seen 6/26!
Oklahoma Seen 6/27!
Rhode Island
South Dakota

I wasn't originally shooting for DC, but I saw a bonus DC plate last week (and got to talk to the guy whose car it was, because I was pointing at it and excitedly saying, "Look! DC!" as he walked up).

Hawaii isn't actually that uncommon here -- I'm a little surprised I haven't seen one in a month.

I've also seen plates from [Beautiful] British Columbia, Baja California (quite common), and also Sinaloa, a Mexican state I haden't seen before.

Some of these last few are going to be tough, though. Rhode Island? Delaware? Good luck with that. At least San Diego is a tourist destination.

Also, this is a stupid hobby for someone with eyesight as bad as mine. But it's been kind of fun.
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[Apr. 14th, 2015|05:21 pm]

Looks like we've got a new neighbor.

That's a foot away from our bathroom window. There's nothing much growing in our front door area, but she has chosen that spindly tree (it's apparently an "evergreen pear," but I lived here for nine years without knowing that because it's not very interesting) for a nest.

Lots of pictures. Because HUMMINGBIRD.Collapse )

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[Nov. 24th, 2014|05:33 pm]

After three days' use, I'm pretty sure I can recommend this heated cat bed. Or, rather, Moly can:




Moly was already a fan of "bowl" beds, so I was pretty sure she'd try it. And once she did, there was little getting her out of it. It's just a gentle warmth, but it's clearly enough to make a cat happy. (I did wonder, at first, if she was just sleeping in it because it was a bed, and not because it was warm, but she was never glued to her old bed like that.)

The other two cats never sleep in Moly's beds, so they haven't investigated or realized what they're missing. Hope it stays that way. (Er, not that I don't want them to be happy, but they're a lot bigger and furrier than Moly, and Toeffe already sleeps in bed with us, so it's not like they're deprived. It's tiny little Moly I worry about keeping warm.)
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[Oct. 31st, 2014|10:03 am]


Where do you fall on the issue of candy corn?

I am indifferent
I've never had candy corn
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[May. 22nd, 2014|03:07 pm]

My petunias remain the best


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[Apr. 14th, 2014|03:06 pm]


These are "Cascadias Indian Summer" petunias and they really are that color. All those colors. I couldn't resist a couple of plants when we went to the awesome garden center to get wood chips.


I also got a hanging basket of parrot's beak lotus vine, which I love. It's hard to keep up with its voracious need for water, and if you let it get dry just once, BAM, all the foliage turns yellow, but I'm doing okay so far.

A few more garden picturesCollapse )
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[Nov. 1st, 2013|05:03 pm]

Fifteen years ago today, I moved into a new apartment and brought a little cat home.



(She looks very fierce here, but she was just talking to me. It's hard to talk to Moly without her talking back.)


Right now:
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[Oct. 31st, 2013|03:47 pm]

I am tired today, because I was up way too late last night. It took me about two hours to carve the pumpkin, I think, or at any rate I worked through one Daily Show, the Michael J Fox pilot, and an episode of Tomorrow People (which, by the way, is terrible). I got a little sloppy toward the end, but I'm pleased with the pumpkin, and I'm glad I did it.

It was already past my bedtime when I finished, and then I spent the entirety of CSI: SomethingOrOther photographing the pumpkin. And then I sat outside for a while just enjoying it.

I am by no means a super advanced pumpkin carver, but I took some in-progress shots and thought they might be interesting.

Details of carving and stuff...Collapse )


I left the tail attached to the edge -- it was very fragile -- and probably should've left the nose just barely attached on the other side. It was a little wobbly when I was doing the last bits of cleanup.

I'm glad the letters are legible, and I'm really happy with the way the neck came out. I had a little saw that was perfectly sized for that.


When we were at the cornfield maze/pumpkin patch a couple of weeks ago, I was brainstorming Doctor Who pumpkin themes and K-9 was the one that grabbed me, but I wasn't at all sure how doable it would be. I went through one false start that was too complicated (I gave up on finishing that pattern when I reached the "argh, what do I do with the head" stage). But in the end, I think it worked out pretty well.

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[Oct. 30th, 2013|11:41 pm]

I'm pretty pleased with this.


(This is far from the only picture I took, but I'm exhausted, so it's the one you're getting tonight. I have to go admire my pumpkin now, because it's not going to last.)
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[Oct. 21st, 2013|09:58 am]


This is what happens when you don't clean under the fridge for a while.

I'd been vaguely aware that we'd been supplying Penny with new puffy balls as the old ones mysteriously disappeared for, um, a while, but I hadn't realized it was quite this bad.

Final tally:

53 puffy balls
two crunchy foil balls
three sparkly tinsel balls
one pom pom of unknown origin
a toy mouse
a catnip bag
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[Sep. 28th, 2013|08:49 pm]

Signs of fall:

Colorful leaves
Chilly nights
The first cat-under-the-blanket of the season
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[Aug. 5th, 2013|09:09 pm]

I'm tempted to do something I threatened a while back and do APAD(ish) solely with cats. A Cat Picture a Day(ish).

I know people make jokes about cat pictures on the internet, but seriously, I love seeing people's cats.
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[Mar. 5th, 2013|03:40 pm]

87 109 ways to call Rose "pink and yellow"
(weird fact: at least five are in the form of recipes)

Read more...Collapse )
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[Nov. 19th, 2012|09:29 am]

When you hear "rainbow bridge," what do you think of?

Dead pets
Norse mythology

(ETA: The reason I ask is that Ken wanted to use the term in a geocache name, and I was a bit concerned about the connotations!)
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marketing stupidity [Oct. 23rd, 2012|05:46 pm]


I have a cold, so my brain may not be working so well, but I spent a good long time staring at this shelf trying to figure out the difference between these two medications.

Then I figured it out: THERE ISN'T ANY.

Just the price.
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A Picture A Day(ish): October 3 [Oct. 3rd, 2012|08:04 pm]

This is a blank geocache log sheet. It's blank because we were the first to find it. AT 3:30 IN THE MORNING.

(Also, this was the only picture I took today, so it's the one you get. We were down by the bay, and I wanted to take a picture of the lights on the water, but my camera battery died.)
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A Picture A Day(ish): October 2 [Oct. 2nd, 2012|05:35 pm]


New bike racks at the mall. I think.

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