Irrsinn.net: taking joy in human unreason

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This Lens, That Cat

A picture of Greg-the-cat.

I love my prime lens.

Buying Russian Train Tickets: A Tale of Language and Gaming

Goal

Get from Moscow to Saint Petersburg on a particular day, starting at a particular time, and on a particular train.

Trouble

I don’t read Russian! Nor do I have a grasp on the phonetics of the alphabet, although I can now successfully remember/guess the sounds of some letters and thus near-cognates (e.g., “ДOKУMEHTA” is probably something about a document, although Google Translate throws up its hands).

Things in My Favor

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All-Call: Granny Squares Translators

I have a lot of French-, Hungarian-, and Italian-speaking visitors to Granny Squares, and a common complaint by visitors is that it’s only in English.

I would love to have help translating into different languages. I’m going to take a first-pass with Google Translate to implement the above three languages, but here’s my all-call:

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January 31st 2014
Tags: On Life and Love, , , One Comment

Visiting Russia: the Unfriendly Reactions

The trip to Russia is in planning–our traveling companion is researching hotels (so we can get visas!) and sight-seeing destinations in Moscow and St. Petersburg.

An aerial shot of Norilsk, Russia.

An aerial shot of Norilsk, Russia.

What’s been surprising me is how much negativity I get when I tell people I’m planning a visit to Russia. “It’s depressing!” (with pictures like the one to the right) “Don’t go to XYZ!” “It’s super-dangerous!” “The USSR?!”

It’s disappointing that my friends and colleagues have little other than (relatively uninformed, I think) skepticism and dire warnings. I find wonder in so many things; a few pictures from the internet don’t suffice to satisfy or discourage that. I might choose not to visit an active damn war zone. I might choose not to flirt with women or gender-bend in a homophobic country. I might also choose not to travel alone.

But as someone who still marvels at standing at the edge of a country or continent in their own damn state, how can I pass up an opportunity for this kind of experience?

Future Proof Has a Blog!

Go read it and subscribe! We’re just getting warmed up, but there’s an announcement there that will be of some interest to folks who might be asking, “Whatcha working on now that Ossuary is released?”

I’ve got a couple of posts lined that will likely end up there–I’ve been playing in the world of free-to-play (mobile) games on my shiny and fast new phone, and the ethics of the set are… fascinating.

January 4th 2014
Tags: On Life and Love, , , One Comment

Of Course: 2014 Travel Is Still Undecided

So last year was Iceland. That was pretty spur-of-the-moment. We decided in May and went in August. Done. I would love to go back, particularly to see northern and eastern Iceland.

This year is up in the air, though. St. Petersburg, Russia is maybe an option, but talks stalled a bit over the break, and I’m a little undecided on traveling with children. Greece or Germany are still appealing.

I’d toyed with going on an adventure cruise with Explor Cruises to the Amazon last year, but the prices were nauseating (see the “Voyage to the Heart of the Amazon”) and I didn’t get a great feeling when I spoke with the agent at Explor Cruises.

That exact same cruise is offered through a few other agencies, including REI, which at least gives proper credit to the actual company running the cruise, Amazon Nature Tours. It’s also cheaper through other agencies.

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January 2nd 2014
Tags: On Life and Love, No Comments

Time Is Not Discrete

I am not feeling New Year’s resolutions this year. When I think, “What do I want to achieve this year?” the list is the same as I am always striving toward:

  • Health (mental, physical, and spiritual),
  • Education (of myself and others), and
  • Creation

Those are the things I strive for everyday anyway. What metrics do I need to judge if I’ve really worked “hard enough” or “well enough”?

Am I healthier? Do I and those around me have more knowledge and compassion for the world? Have I created something and shared it?

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