Miscellany

The Sound of Music Rehearsals: The Nunnery

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Yesterday started out as a full-cast rehearsal. We all did warm-ups together — real, full warm-ups — for the first time, including some more name-learning. We then picked up where we left off with the read-through of the script. There was little left, so it took us less than an hour. Erin (the staging director) made some general comments about the direction she wants to take us in; she and Jaime (the stage manager) made some announcements regarding things they need from us.

My tendency to ask more questions than anybody else manifested itself in a slightly-amusing-but-slightly-exasperating fashion, as usual. I’ve resolved to try to rein my question-asking in a bit, writing down questions that apply only to myself or to a few people for later asking.

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Miscellany

The Sound of Music Rehearsals: Gettin’ the Ball Rollin’

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So. I am too lazy to check and see if I’ve mentioned this on the blog yet, but I’m in TBA Theatre‘s upcoming production of The Sound of Music.

And it’s going to be awesome. (Less than three. Less than three. Less than three!)

Everyone in the cast is great. We have an array of beautiful singing voices and fantastic acting talent; everyone has a wonderful attitude; and everyone is totally jazzed about doing this. Some of our cast have never been in a play before, but I have every confidence in their ability. Irony alert: all of our on-stage newbies are adults. All the children have been in at least one play before. Interesting, no? But I digress.

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Miscellany

The Problem with Modern Television

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I’ve watched the first few episodes of the remake of V (Not for Vendetta! V, a different sci-fi show.) showing on ABC. I don’t think I will be watching any more. This is not because it’s bad. On the contrary, I think they’ve done an excellent job of updating the story to account for today’s sociopolitical atmosphere and adapting the storytelling to the standards of modern television.

Unfortunately, the standards of modern television don’t work for V.

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Games

Showing Up to a Raid is Good Etiquette

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Some World of Warcraft players have a chronic problem with accepting raid invitations and failing to show up to them. It’s a problem I’ve seen before in Dungeons & Dragons, as well. The player is of the “it’s only a game” mentality — since it’s only a game, it doesn’t matter if he shows up or not.

While it’s true that it’s only a game, such people fail to see is that it’s not about the activity you engage in. It’s about the people on the other side of the table — or internet, in the case of WoW. We could be planning a huge cake-baking session, for example, and if the guy bringing all the flour decides at the last-minute that he’d rather go see a movie with his friends, well… sure, we can get flour somehow. It’s likely to take at least half an hour, though, and that’s several other people’s time wasted because one person was inconsiderate. In business terms, if you wasted half an hour of nine people’s time at the example wage of $10 an hour, then that’s 4.5 hours or $45 (plus the extra taxes employers have to pay).

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Miscellany

Netflix — On Mah PS3!

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I first took up Netflix eons ago, when there was no service hub in Anchorage, Alaska. Turn around time on my new rentals, from the day I dropped a DVD in the mail for return to Netflix, was about a week. I was thinking it wasn’t really worth it when Netflix produced the ability to stream movies straight to your computer from their web site. Hooray, I thought. Only… I have to use Internet Explorer? And I’m not even interested in any of these movies!

So I cancelled my service and went on my merry way. My friends told me when they put the Anchorage hub in, but at the time Netflix and my lifestyle weren’t going to jive, so I just catalogued the information for future use. A few months ago, I got an e-mail from Netflix. Come on, they said, give us another chance. We’ll even give you another two-week trial. Netflix would very much jive with my current carless lifestyle, I figured, so I said yes.

I am so glad that I did. Turn around is now two days — one to the hub, one back to me — and their streaming library is vast and ever-changing, losing some titles here and there but always getting more in their places. They also offer more ways to view streaming media. In addition to the ability to view movies on your computer from one of multiple browsers, you can get Netflix’s streaming service delivered to your TV through one of various devices. For a while, those various devices have included the Xbox 360, but not the PS3.

As of a several days ago, that changed.

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Miscellany

A Quarter of a Century

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As of a couple of days go, I am 25. I have witnessed a quarter of a century.

The first major event I was really cognizant of was the fall of the Berlin Wall. I was living in upstate New York at the time. My father was still in the army, and I was under the impression that he would be reassigned to Germany. That assignment got changed to Alaska because of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Looking back on my life now, I can see that so much of it would be wildly different if the Berlin Wall had remained up for even a couple more years. So many of my nearest and dearest would likely be neither.

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Miscellany

Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight, Me Hating to Love it, and People Who Love to Hate It

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About 95% of fan fiction is pure crap — the authors didn’t even care enough about their own work to put it through a spell check or ask someone to read and critique it or anything along those lines. Many of these are Mary Sue stories. Most of them involve sex. They have bad plots and little to no character development (or they develop the character in a way totally out of line with the original story). Anyone who knows what good writing is should avoid reading them. The authors should have kept these stories to themselves, for everyone else’s sakes.

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Miscellany

The Word “Nigger”

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10 years later edit (March 24, 2019): I’ve grown as a person in the past ten years. Many of the things I wrote here – about how it doesn’t make sense for it to be okay for black people to use the word nigger, my then-scorn for the guy in WoW who chided me about using the word in chat, etc. – no longer reflect my views. I’m sorry.

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Miscellany

This Morning on Twitter

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About five minutes before I needed to leave my house to catch the bus this morning, I had some fun on Twitter. As best as I can tell, it’s been erased from my profile. I dunno what happened, but my friend Ted retweeted it at me. Here’s a transcript of the whole thing.

Wish I didn’t have to go to work today. … Oh, hey, where did this fish come from?

Wait, where did THAT fish come from?

Oh God, more?!!! There’re fish everywhere — they’re starting to rain from the sky!

Three inches deep in the street already. Folks, I think armageddon is upon us. Run! RUN! Get into your bomb shelters

@chickenscluckcluck No. This random scientist here says that the fishes are expected to envelop all but a few of the highest mountains.

Also: Sea level is expected to rise because of unexpected mass added. Underground or bust.

Farewell, everyone. May we meet again some day.

Miscellany

My Favorite Firefox Add-Ons

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I’ve been using Firefox for some years now, having been introduced to it shortly before it boomed into popularity and made Microsoft start to sweat. I don’t use too many add-ons for it. In fact, I currently use exactly five. There are a great number of useful add-ons out there which I like but I don’t keep installed because my use of them would be rare. (One notable example of this is the Firefox Companion for eBay. Great if you use eBay regularly… which I don’t.)

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