Irrsinn.net: taking joy in human unreason

2010

Enviable Family Ties

My mother always wanted a tight-knit family.

Instead, she got me and my father.

Twice in the last couple of days, I’ve been privy some eye-opening views on families. One of my friends is trying very, very hard to have a baby. She’s struggling, but it’s her goal, and what most of her energy seems to be going towards.

It was fascinating to sit and talk with her about her research on everything from breastfeeding to cloth diapers to her psych class education on child development. She’s a critical thinker who has a sharp eye for analyzing what she sees in other parents/kids and cutting through bullshit.

I love it. Didn’t make me want to have a kid, but I always enjoy being around someone geeking, and I still suffer from wanting to know something about (almost) everything.

Yesterday, one of my coworkers was talking about her family–her brother did this, her other brother did that. Most of the stories she tells–which are all great and funny–are about her family, which struck me as unusual. She has non-family friends, but doesn’t talk about them much.

Finally, I asked, “Your family seems very… family-oriented. What’s up with that?”

Keep reading >>

Weekly linkage

This week’s internet cruising:

  • APW Book Club: Elizabeth Gilbert’s Committed, Round II « A Practical Wedding – Not all choices are empowering. "Because here is the thing: the more we talk about marriage here, the more I worry. I worry that we’re being given the illusion of lots of options, and the reality of really sh*tty options. I worry that the sh*ttiest of options (over-work, under-appreciation, enormous sacrifice) are being sold to us under the guise of 'independent womanhood,' instead of under the guise of 'life is hard sometimes, and you can make it through, but you should fight for things to be easier.'

    I worry when I hear about most of us* doing the bulk of the chores around the house. Not because we have to, but because we want to ('I just care more about cleanliness than he does, so I need to take responsibility for that.')"

  • Reproductive Writes: I Choose My Choice: An Interview with Elizabeth Kissling | Bitch Magazine – It's about a commercial that ran back in March of this year, but Kissling defines "post-feminism"–a term I've heard and never seen clearly described–and ties it into an enlightening analysis of this commercial and neo liberalism.  I don't know enough yet to analyze her comparison of post-feminism and neo liberalism, but I agree with her analysis of this "period-control" product: it's control over your body (yay, superficially), but not necessarily actually empowering.

    Her words on the neo liberalism dilemma with regards to menstruation: "A menstruating woman can't present herself as a rational, self-actualizing subject, she isn't able to participate in consumerism 24/7. A non-menstruating body is much better suited to market success in the consumer economy."

  • Elf M. Sternberg – Someday, Cognitive Dissonance will be Painful – "He got riled up to the point where he said, 'If I'm ever at a baseball game and the guy next to me doesn't take his hat off and stand up for the pledge, I'm going to knock his hat off, grab him by the collar and stand him up.'" I'll tell you, there'd be two cases of felony assault going on.
  • thestar.com iPhone : Controversy pushes girl off coed hockey team – This is absolute bullshit. This young woman (the only girl on a coed hockey team) was singled out for lacking skill–a dubious claim, according to the coach–by the parent of another child on the team. She quit to spare herself the scrutiny.
  • Buying individual health insurance policies with pre-tax dollars – "The PPACA may make it possible for workers to get the same tax break for purchasing health insurance on the individual market (via an exchange or otherwise) as they would if they bought their employer-sponsored plan (if they’re offered one)."
  • MenTaLguY: Metroid: Other M – The Elephant in the Room – I don't play the Metroid Prime games, but this coverage of the Other M game is an awesome read. "For the last few releases, the games have been getting more and more story-based, with Sakamoto’s very strong emphasis on narrative in Other M turning Metroid into a series with a story that literally can’t be ignored except through well-timed bathroom breaks. This might be fine if the story were different."

Uplink: Soothing Routine, or Monotonous Punch in the Face?

I picked up Steam’s Indie Future Pack this weekend–great buy, by the by–which includes Uplink, a game about hacking. And more hacking. …And getting caught.

The premise and mechanics are pretty simple: you’re an agent of Uplink with a handle, a plaintext password, and a bank account. You connect to the web through your gateway (think: managed, dedicated server), and hack companies and government databases to earn money, increased rating through Uplink, and status amongst your fellow hackers. There’s also some sort of “hack the planet” or “save the cheerleader” plot in there, but we’ll get to that.

Or not, actually.

I played this game a few years ago and loved it. I don’t remember why I stopped, except that maybe I graduated college and became exhausted.

Picking it up this weekend, though, I found that I have a much more analytical eye towards it. I blame the Weir(d) One. The game suffers from a narrowly-defined path to success, which gives the feeling that there’s only one (or two, or three) ways to succeed at the game. When a game opens by giving me a crap-ton of missions, no plot, and various ways to upgrade and optimize, I expect more of a sandbox than Uplink provides.

SlashNBurn was my first hacker. (Hey, at least it wasn’t “ZeroCool”.) Keep reading >>

Wedding Video vs. Photos

A thousand dollars for photos, or a thousand dollars for video?

Surely, this is a normal modern bride’s dilemma. If I pick only one to be done professionally, which is better?

Or should I pick neither to be done professionally? Disposable cameras on the tables are very “in” now, and neither service is cheap.

How often do we really look back on photos? Greg: never. Me: I… like organizing things. On the flip side, how often am I going to watch a video of my own wedding? At our first anniversary? When I’m contemplating divorce in seven decades?

Keep reading >>

Google Apps: Migration to New Services

As of yesterday, I had two Google accounts: my irrsinn.net Google Apps account and my regular ol’ Google Account. Both had the same email address, but the Google Account let me into services like Reader, Voice, and Feedburner.

Having two accounts was annoying, but not unbearable. It meant that Google Voice, for instance, had none of my preciously-maintained and iWone-synced contacts. I just created contacts within Voice as calls came in, no biggie, but I’ve definitely been using the service less as a result.

Turns out that Google’s been working on this, and recently added a boatload to services to Google Apps users: Voice, Feedburner, and Reader being the three I’m more interested in. AdSense was tricky, and was only moved for posterity. Keep reading >>


Recent Posts

A New Granny Squares Design Incoming

So… not to put too much pressure on my designer, but I’ve actually hired someone to do a design for Granny Squares!

A screenshot of Granny Square Colors as of July 2014.

The site as of July 2014.

Its current look was always intended to be revamped down the road — I just needed something simple and clean to get the site rolling. With a few thousand visitors a month now, and with 56% of my users on some form of mobile device, it’s time for a facelift. I’ve gotten a few donations from running the site over the last 3 years, and that’s enough to cover the design costs.

I should have ready-to-implement designs by mid-August. I won’t promise an implementation date yet, but I’ll wrap up whatever version of the site I’m on at that point and make getting the new look in place the priority.

The PT Appointment Is Made

My cat Jackie, curled up and looking lazy.

Your dose of cat for this post.

Had my 5-ish week checkup this morning with the shoulder surgeon (strange person — I’d describe them as “brusquely kind”), and based on my pain levels, the prognosis is good!

Keep reading >>

Feeling Better… With Holes in My Shoulder

Shoulder surgery happened on June 13 (a little over five weeks ago). This whole process has been… fascinating.

The surgical morning itself had that weird fast-slow sensation to it: it felt like the waiting was forever, and then suddenly I was getting wheeled back and drawn on and poked and suddenly I was waking up and couldn’t breathe and coughing and then waiting… again.

My two cats curled up together, sleeping In one of the waiting phases, I did an awesomely helpful meditation with PUUC‘s Rev Robin. I went into surgery nice and calm, and everyone was pleased and surprised at my cheery demeanor afterwards. Aside from occasional whining, my mood remains pretty cheerful, despite some miscommunications that have occurred.

During one of the wait periods that morning, a random person came by and dropped off the sling I’d be wearing for at least 6 weeks. Hi, random person. I don’t know you, but you were pretty nice.

Keep reading >>

Shoulder Diagnosis and (Pending) Fix

I got an MRI with contrast last Friday afternoon. That process was quite unpleasant–I’d thought the contrast might be issued intravenously, but, alas, it was not. I had a shot into my shoulder socket.

Friday night was rough, because the contrast caused serious swelling in the socket. It took until Saturday afternoon for me to get the swelling back under control with my measly, widely-spaced ibuprofen doses.

I saw Dr. H for the results Monday morning, and there’s evidence of shoulder impingement from the shape of my acromial bone, plus some fraying (and possible tear) in the anterior area of my labrum. I got referred to Dr. H’s favorite shoulder surgeon, Dr. B.

I met Dr. B yesterday afternoon, and although we talked about the possibility of doing a couple months of rehab to see if that heals things up, he agreed that (given levels of pain, the duration of pain, etc.) surgery was certainly a reasonable option.

Keep reading >>

A Light at the End of the Tunnel

Almost three weeks ago, I attended a beginner’s yoga class. I’d attended that one a couple times before, along with some more advanced classes.

As always, I only did a few chatarangas and planks, backing off before shoulder pain set in. I took full wheel, which went smoothly (as usual).

Later that evening, my shoulder was in agony. The agony persisted to the next day. And the next. For almost two weeks.

The standard muscular soreness lasted a couple of days, as I’d expect. It was a workout for my shoulder, so I expected the tightness.

Keep reading >>

Ossuary Now on Steam Greenlight; Plus Some Feels

Ossuary, that game we released back in November, is now on Steam Greenlight.

Greenlight is a weird phenomenon, and I’m aware that there are folks who read this who might not know how it works.

Which is okay, because even the rest of us kinda don’t.

Keep reading >>

This Lens, That Cat

A picture of Greg-the-cat.

I love my prime lens.