Category: Uncategorized

my summer reading project is to finally get to a few of the 19th-century English classics on my shelf. just finished The Tenant of Wildfell Hall; next up: Middlemarch πŸ“š

an almost picture of an almost full moon

Twitter is Bad

Ever since the FBI raided Mar-a-Lago, I’ve gotten more and more sucked back in to Twitter. I still don’t post there, but I have an account and some old “lists” of political and legal pundit types. The excitement was real, and I wanted to know What Happened Next, As Soon As It Happened!

But I’m back on the wagon again, now. There are many specific things to criticize Twitter for, but what I really can’t stand anymore is the hyper-cynical tone that’s basically the baseline for the entire platform (at least from my view, from within my bubble, etc.).

This tweet, retweeted by someone on my list, perfectly sums it up, for me:
Screen Shot 2022 09 09 at 9 20 11 AM" title="Screen Shot 2022-09-09 at 9.20.11 AM.png" border="0" width="277" height="173" style="float:right;" alt="Screenshot of a tweet, reading: 'The Queen's death could create one of the worst weeks ever on here. British people debasing themselves, 600-tweet colonialism threads, men in hats on horses on TV. A grief bomb followed by a magnitude 8 takequake resulting in an outbreak of mass amateur historianism. Be careful.'
One the one hand, that’s probably a pretty accurate description of some of the reaction to Queen Elizabeth’s death on Twitter. Yet this take warning about takes, this amateur analysis warning about amateurs, this cynicism warning about cynics is dripping with the world-weary disgust one must evidently armor oneself with just to participate “on here”.

Maybe it’s a knowing, winking, meta “joke”, at least for some of the ~48,000 people who retweeted, quoted, or “liked” it. It just made me feel gross. On the bright side, though, it snapped me out of my hypnosis.

The shady “Bitcoin Billionaire” link injected in my post earlier was courtesy of an old plugin connected to a now now compromised site. Deactivated, deleted & fixed. Thank you, Zal! 😊

The Fox

We had a fox in our backyard yesterday.

We’d seen a couple of them last week, scampering around back there for a few minutes. One of them was walking along the top of the wooden fence that rings the yard, just as our neighbors’ cat does. It seemed unsure of quite how to get down, but eventually just took the plunge, alighting nimbly on the ground. The two of them exited by squeezing under a loose fence-board.

Yesterday’s was different. It was alone, and laying down, right in the middle of the grassy (more or less) portion of the yard. It seemed cute at first, but we felt more troubled as it just lay there. Foxes aren’t nocturnal; they’re most active at dawn and dusk, the internet informed us. So it wasn’t as odd as we’d first thought, but still seemed weird.

What if it’s hurt?, we wondered. Hit by a car, or shot by some fool, or who knows what? Should we call someone, and if so, who? Searches for “wildlife rescue” followed the earlier ones about fox habits. The fox rolled over and shifted position a couple of times, but otherwise didn’t move. This went on, our worries mounting, the fox sleeping, for more than an hour.

Finally, it stood up, and walked leisurely – and with no trouble that I could see – to a spot in the horse herb we’ve let grow longer. It chilled there for a while, got up again, strolled to the patio to get a drink from a bucket we collect rainwater in, and then slipped under the fence again.

Until next time, little buddy.

Fox in backyard


#musicMonday Echo & the Bunnymen’s Songs to Learn and Sing (1985). standout tracks: Do It Clean, The Killing Moon

#musicMonday No More

The trial of “#musicMonday” recommendations being worth even short posts here is over; thanks for playing. New weekly recommendations, for the time being, are back on Twitter only.

An Unicks Bestiary

Remember why’s (Poignant) Guide to Ruby? Man I love that thing. What a fantastic, awesome work.

And now that I found that link, and got drawn into reading the amazing beginning for the hundredth time, I hesitate to bring it up, to even mention it in comparison to the subject of this post. What I want to introduce to you pales so anemically next to w(P)GtR as to basically become invisible. But at the same time, the whole crazy thing is my inspiration.

why's poignant foxes

I’ve been reading a lot of technical blogs and tutorials lately. I mean, as developers we read a lot of that stuff anyway, but even more than usual. And at some point the very sameness of it all, the tone, the style, even the depth, I don’t know, it started dragging me down. The thought occurred to me, and just will not leave me alone: there’s not enough weird out there. Not enough odd, interesting, _why-style stuff.

So, without further ado, here’s my first contribution: An Unicks Bestiary. It isn’t an introduction to the Unix command line, or a comprehensive reference of it. Its focus instead is tips & techniques that I’ve found over the course of *cough*twenty-plus*cough* years banging away at a Unix (Linux/BSD/Solaris/AIX/HP-UX/etc) prompt. Fellow command-line folks will probably see plenty of stuff you already know, but I hope there’s some amount that you don’t know or have forgotten. Or at least that you get a grin from this humble tribute to illuminated medieval bestiaries, from the nigh-unreadable font or the delightfully bizarre creature illustrations (all public domain as of about five centuries ago).

Hope you like it.

Things That Are Better Than Buying the New Wild Flag CD at Waterloo at 10:30PM & Blasting It All the Way Home

A comprehensive list:


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