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That *was* a nice way to start the day. A former co-worker just pinged me to ask about a bit of software that he knew I've handled before so I emailed an example to him so that he can do it quickly. I say this because, while I am just a toolmaker, it's nice when a descendant of mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan asks me how I did this or that.
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Did I really go thru all those technological changes since I graduated from college as a computer programmer in May 1977? I guess I did, and successfully too.
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"A few hours ago I thought I was alone. It's nice not to be." She gave his shoulder a little thump with her fist, pulled his head down and pressed her lips hard against his cheek. "Welcome back, Willie love. And please - don't do it again. I've never felt so lonely."

Modesty Blaise to her closest friend in "The Improbable Virgin".
(My thanks again to Susan de Guardiola for convincing me I'd love Modesty.)
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"It wasn't a chance. I saw talent and a very intelligent person. You got the job because you were the right one for it."

This morning I wrote to my former/former/former/former/former/(catchbreath)/former manager to say that the 20th anniversary of my being with the company is coming up, and to thank her for taking a chance by hiring me. The above is what she responded.
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Yesterday, a few minutes before I was about to log off and catch the bus home…
(“Serge, we need you to set up two urgent change requests for Friday!”)
A few minutes after the bus has gone, I say…
(“Here they are. Please approve them.”)
A few minutes later, with the next bus coming soon…
(“One of the requests should really be scheduled for Thursday,” one of the coordinators says.)
A few minutes later, with the next bus gone…
(“Both requests should really be scheduled for Thursday,” says *another* coordinator.)
A few minutes later…
(“I will contact the other team and ask them when the requests can be handled,” says yet another coordinator.)
A few minutes later… That coordinator’s email finally goes out.
A few minutes later… No response from the other team.
A few minutes later… No response from the other team.
A few minutes later… I leave and go home, and have hot dogs for dinner.
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Recent reading...

TL Morganfield's e*novelette "Death's Good Dog", another story where the American West meets Aztec gods. Recommended.
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Recent reading... "Luckstones", an e*collection of three short stories by Madeleine Robins. Fun. I especially liked "A Writ of Exception". When two Families work to come together by having one family's only child - a girl - marry the other family's only son, it kind of throws a wrench in the works when the son gets killed. Not to let such details get in the way, the Family heads get a Writ of Exception so that the dead son's sister can marry the other family's daughter. The problem is that one of the girls has no interest in life but to become a scholar, while the other girl would by far prefer a husband to a wife. Things are eventually worked out. I wish the author wove a novel out of this.
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Recent reading... "Before The Living End" and "The Secret Lives of Dead Men". They respectively collect Issues 1-5, and 6-10 of Ed Brubaker's comic-book "Velvet". Set in 1973, it's about a woman who worked for a very secret agency of the British secret services until they started to suspect she had been turned against her masters. Now she has to find what is really going on and who set her up for a fall in this dark and twisted tale, with a high body count. It has *one* joke, when someone refers to the agency's equivalent of 007's Q as Joe 90.

Looking forward to the rest of the story, still to be published.
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"I'm not a monster. I just can't... make him give up his life here for... something that isn't working anymore."
"I understand."
She dug a Kleenex from her purse and blew her nose. "Do you? Really?"
"I was so afraid that you wouldn't. That you'd hate me for this. I can't stand the thought of ever losing you."
"When have you ever lost me?"

I just finished reading Armistead Maupin's "Sure of You", another of his novels about friendship and love and fear that they will end, which got its title from AA Milne.

Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind.
"Pooh!" he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
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Last night I finished "Nemesis Games", James SA Corey's fifth novel of space opera "The Expanse". Did I like it? Well, I'm expecting it to be my top nominee for next year's Hugos. How good is it? Let's say that if the "Expanse" tv series makes it all the way to the events of this novel, it will knock the audience's socks off.
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Regarding the upcoming 20th anniversary of my being with this employer, I hope my boss doesn't bring it up to anybody else in the team because then they'll feel obligated to congratulate me and I'll have to pretend it's an achievement.
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After we'd switched to our recovery environment, during last weekend's exercise, I was tempted to let one of our tech people send out the email telling everybody that the switch was successful because they had done the actual work. Then I asked myself what my friend and once co-worker would say to me about that and I decided that, since I had done all the prep work(*), and since I had managed the whole thing, I should be the one to give the good news. That went against my nature, but my nature has not been a good guide to success.

(*) As my boss said during the my yearly review, I " a lot of tasks that people don't want to..."
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Unrelated to today's momentous events - and quite pale in comparison... I have accomplished an accomplishment at work. The project I had planned and managed is going well. We just completed the switch to our recovery environment, only three minutes behind schedule, and jobs are running smoothly over there.. I think I'll have a drink then some sleep.
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"Searching for a bike she could 'borrow' to get to Golden Gate Park, she felt the sound before her ears registered it: an earth-shattering blast that rattled windows, set off every car alarm on the block and sent her crashing to her knees. For a few moments she was too deaf even to think, and then she realized what she had just heard. The Gjallarhorn. The herald of Ragnarok, the Last Battle, the end of the world."

(from Susan Krinard's contemporary fantasy novel "Battlestorm")
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"You can't be with *her*," Mist said, letting her hand fall. "Not with Hel."
"But I died of old age," he said. "Of sickness and my body's failure. I was never bound for Valhalla."
She tried to touch him, but her hand passed through him and emerged coated with ash.

- from "Battlestorm", Susan Krinard's upcoming contemporary fantasy novel about Ragnarok in the San Francisco Bay Area
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"Alien superweapons were used," Alex said, walking into the room, sleep-sweaty hair standing out from his skull in every direction. "The laws of physics were altered, mistakes were made."

- from James S. A. Corey​'s "Nemesis Games", latest in the "Expanse" space opera series
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I just finished reading Armistead Maupin's novel "Significant Others". Very romantic, about loneliness, love, friendship, family of the blood, family that you luck into.
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I wonder if Mrs Madrigal would have allowed me to stay at San Francisco's 28 Barbary Lane.

I'm reading and enjoying Armistead Maupin's novel "Significant Others".
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I recently completed my voting for this year's Hugo Awards, after which I went to a nearby bookstore hoping to find something that'd chase away the taste of the whole Pupae-tainted affair. I wound up far from the SF field, and into the mystery section hoping I'd find something by Ed Gorman or by BJ Oliphant, and I wound up with cozy mystery "One Foot in the Grape" by Carlene O'Neil. It's set in the Monterey wine country and my subconscious must have played tricks on me because the heroine gets involved when her relative finds that someone is spoiling her vineyard's wine.

That being said, I'm having a good time with this book and, when I'm done with it, I'll go back to my favorite genre, with James SA Corey's space opera novel "Nemesis Game".

five down

Jun. 8th, 2015 01:41 pm
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Five Hugo novel nominees down.
I am now *done* with this year's Hugos.