403: Fractal of nested rainbow curves. (Edges)
[personal profile] 403
My current book is Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents. I'm less than halfway through, but so far it's fantastic.

I want to talk about one of the exercises, which aims to shake out key bits of "how other people should change to make you feel valued". To do this, one is to quickly and without thinking much, complete the sentences:

* I wish other people were more ______.
* Why is it so hard for people to ______?
* For a change, I would love someone to treat me like ______.
* Maybe one of these days I'll find someone who will ______.
* In an ideal world with good people, other people would ______.

Continued inside... )


Jun. 27th, 2017 06:00 am
[syndicated profile] nicholas_oneill_feed

Posted by ukcomposer

A full and fulfilling day yesterday, taking me from one end of the Piccadilly line to the other and back again over a fourteen hour span, and including all sorts of different musical endeavours, from transcribing improvised saxophone solos by ear to earning a round of applause from the Parliament Choir for some impromptu theatrics designed to get them into the party spirit.

I prize my free time, my chances to play, relax and enjoy myself, so work needs to be something that brings rewards with it for me to find it worthwhile, especially as I head towards my half century.  Financial rewards certainly help to keep the wolf from the door, but there needs to be an intrinsic value in what I do if at all possible.

I would have to say that partially by luck but largely by design I seem to find myself in that happy situation where everything I do musically brings its own advantages and delights, even if they can be wrapped up in early starts, long drives and moments of stress.

Even so, yesterday was a particularly good day, and I look to the week ahead with more arranging to be done and more to be written on my new orchestral piece.  I had no time yesterday to get ideas for this onto paper, but am planning to do some work on it later today.

As for the rest of the week, a mixture of work and leisure beckons, and a couple of social engagements in the wilds of the Somerset countryside as our social circle gradually expands.  Who knows whether further possibilities might lie hidden therein?

Music meme and gaming

Jun. 26th, 2017 08:00 pm
liv: alternating calligraphed and modern letters (letters)
[personal profile] liv
Day 9 of the (in my case very slow-running) music meme asks for a song that makes you happy. And I have quite a lot of those, making me happy is a big reason I have a music collection at all. I think I'm going to go for Complex person by The Pretenders. The lyrics are not all that cheerful in some ways, but I love the bouncy tune and I always hear this as a song about determination and not letting things get you down.

video embed, actually audio only )

Also I've had a good week for playing games: mostly list with short comments )
[syndicated profile] ikeahacker_feed

Posted by Contributor

Audio Production Workstation with pull-out keyboard tray and pull-out MIDI keyboard

IKEA items used:

  • 1X KLIMPEN Table top, 47 1/4×23 5/8 “
  • 1X LINNMON Table top, 47 1/4×23 5/8 “
  • 2 packs of 2X CAPITA brackets
  • 4x OLOV adjustable table leg
  • 1x SIGNUM cable management

NON-IKEA items used:

  • 2x 18” full extension drawer slides (from my local hardware store)
  • Industrial strength sticky back Velcro (from my local hardware store)
  • Fellowes Designer Suites™ Compact Keyboard Tray (from Amazon)
  • Duramex Economy Dual Monitor Arms Fully Adjustable Desk Mount / Articulating Stand For 2 LCD Screens up to 32” Inch (from Amazon)

Here’s how to put together an Audio Production Workstation:

The desk I had wasn’t really working for me anymore, so I decided to donate it and start anew.

I wanted to paint the KLIMPEN tabletop and the Capita brackets black before I started, but I didn’t have enough time so I decided against doing it now, however, when I move, I will probably paint them before reassembling the desk for a more uniform look.

First of all, I assembled the OLOV legs with the KLIMPEN table top. While the underside of the desk was still facing up, I installed the Fellowes keyboard tray and the Signum cable management. Here is a picture I took just before installing the cable management unit.

add the pull out keyboard tray

Then, I flipped the desk over and screwed the drawer slides to the top of the desk. I had to measure so that they would be centered and at the ideal distance to support my midi keyboard properly, so depending on which device you are trying to support, you should measure accordingly.

drawer slides for the midi keyboard

Then, I put the hooks and loops of the velcro strips together and removed the sticky backing on both sides. I then put the Velcro strips on top of the drawer slides.

drawer slides for the midi keyboard

Next, I made sure my midi keyboard was centered and I put it on top of the slides. Then I made sure the sticky backing would actually stick to my keyboard to hold it in place, which it did.

drawer slides for the midi keyboard

Audio Production Workstation with pull out midi keyboard

Then, I assembled the CAPITA brackets under the LINNMON table top. I made sure the brackets would point inwards so that I could screw them easily into the KLIMPEN desk.

Audio Production Workstation

Next. I placed the LINNMON/CAPITA table on top of the KLIMPEN table, made sure all the edges were equal and level, and traced around the CAPITA brackets on the KLIMPEN table to have a guide to drill the holes required for permanent mounting.

Audio Production Workstation

Then, I marked the center of each oval. That is the drill guide.

Audio Production Workstation

Next, I drilled the 4 holes for the CAPITA brackets in the KLIMPEN table top.

Audio Production Workstation

Then, after cleaning up, I mounted the top table on the bottom table according to the CAPITA instructions. After that, I installed the monitor arm on the LINNMON table top.

This is the final result with all of my devices installed:

Audio Production Workstation with pull-out keyboard tray and pull-out MIDI keyboard

Audio Production Workstation with pull-out keyboard tray and pull-out MIDI keyboard

Audio Production Workstation with pull-out keyboard tray and pull-out MIDI keyboard

If I had real studio monitors, which will happen eventually, the clearance under my screens would allow for the speakers to rest sideways without being obstructed. But for now, this works just fine.

~ by Marie-Audrée Houle

The post Audio Production Workstation with pull-out MIDI keyboard appeared first on IKEA Hackers.

[syndicated profile] beaker_folk_feed

Posted by Archdruid Eileen

O Thou who pourest blessings from above
and knowest both our incomings and our outgoings,
and blesseth both chip and pin,
Bless this contactless PED, thy creature of silicon and plastic,.
that it may take the right amounts from thy servants
in a secure, PCI-compliant and seamless manner.
and open up the hearts of thy servants
and bless their givings
that they may be cheerful givers
and yet never go overdrawn
lest they suffer the dread retribution of thy servants the banks
and fall into debt eternal.


"Ugh, troll bogies!"

Jun. 26th, 2017 01:05 pm
marnanel: (Default)
[personal profile] marnanel

[This was the review of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone” I posted on June 8th 1999, shortly before the release of “Azkaban”.]

It's been quite a while since I enjoyed a previously unread children's book as much as I enjoyed HP&TPS. At first, the book did seem to skip through genres quite jerkily: I think the introduction, an ugly-duckling story as with the start of, say, James and the Giant Peach, was a bit too long for a section so separate from the rest of the story. But the mystery part was excellent and I never guessed the secret. (It's an interesting point that there's no way you can be really evil if you have a stammer.) Considered as a school story... I'm not sure I can tell: the conventions for stories about boys' schools and girls' schools are so different, and good stories (such as this one) about co-ed schools are correspondingly so rare. Perhaps this is just my limited experience.

Incidentally, I wonder how much she was influenced by DWJ. The idea of the Ministry of Magic is very similar to Chrestomanci's department (though with different motives); you could perhaps draw (a few) parallels with Witch Week.

The description of the first few days at the school did get slightly irritating, because your attention kept being summarily drawn to a rapid succession of things which were (or seemed to be) just for show, without any obvious use in the story (e.g. the Choosing Hat): it was rather as though the author had invited you over to show you her holiday snaps. This is one of the places where I'd draw unfavourable comparisons with the subtle way DWJ has of doing the same thing; nevertheless, there are lots of good little ideas used well, with Diagon Alley and the Every Flavour sweets being especially memorable.

A few oddnesses: I'm sure Hermione's logic puzzle has more than one solution. The bizarre HM turned without warning into a bizarre moralist beside the Mirror of Erised (though you could draw comparisons with his behaviour by Harry's sick bed). Quidditch was rather run to death. Were there really no half-decent people in the whole of Slytherin? And by the way, I'm fairly sure I remember reading in Brewer that the Philosopher's Stone was pink and crumbly, not scarlet... hmm!

But it's also been a while since I've slowed down towards the end of a book because I know I'm going to miss the characters (cf. the Neverending Story). So I think I'll look out for the sequel... besides, I want to know whether Harry & Hermione get together :) . I'll certainly be recommending this to people I know who are sensible enough to want to read it.

[And a small claim to fame: AFAIK I was the first person to try to create a Harry Potter newsgroup.]


Jun. 26th, 2017 06:00 am
[syndicated profile] nicholas_oneill_feed

Posted by ukcomposer

In the end it all came rushing back at once, that whole composition thing. Having spent a goodly amount of time faffing around with the beginning of the orchestral work it turned out that what I needed was a clear head, a quiet place and a little bit of spare time.

Those three elements coincided on the drive to London early on Sunday morning. Radio off, for once I turned my thoughts to the piece at hand rather than what my diary required, and the benefits were swift in coming.

The only problem with composing on the fly in such conditions is that the ideas and the details need to be stored away somewhere to be written down later, and it is easy to lose a bit here and a bit there along the way. Thankfully there was enough left in my head, and close enough to my original conception, to work with later in the day.

While I would not yet say that the dam has broken on this piece at least there is now much more to work with than there was at the start of the weekend, a focus for the central section, and a much clearer idea of where the opening should head and how the ending should progress.

I must also admit that it felt good, diving into some fluent composition without having to fight for every single note. Given that such fluency is usually a good harbinger for the quality of the finished product I was happy to embrace it.

[syndicated profile] beaker_folk_feed

Posted by Archdruid Eileen

Disappointed that the operating arm of the Beaker Folk, "Mrs Whimsey's Doilies" plc, was outbid by a Russian billionaire in buying Holland and Barrett, the sellers of vitamin pills and homoeopathic remedies.

I feel let down, really. I offered the holding company a very reasonable sum. To wit, my empty purse which used to have some money in it.

But in the end they accepted an offer of real money - not just its diluted memory.

It's almost like they don't believe in their own products.

We're back

Jun. 26th, 2017 05:32 am
ghoti_mhic_uait: (Tomorrow)
[personal profile] ghoti_mhic_uait
Two weeks of roses and playparks, museums and public art, wide open avenues, petunias and rolling hills. Two weeks of Tom and he has failed to notice that I am fundamentally unlikable. He, of course, is perfectly delightful.

We spent one week in Almaty and one week in Astana, with a day in Bishkek and a train journey across Kazakhstan. It was every bit as wonderful as I could have imagined, and we had an amazing time. The people are so lovely and the cities so beautiful.

I am a rose

Jun. 25th, 2017 10:02 pm
marnanel: (Default)
[personal profile] marnanel

This is the first of our rose plants to flower.
The plant's name is Sheila.

I've been growing roses all my life.
I wear a necklace of rosewood.
In many ways, I am a rose.

Roses aren't naturally climbing plants, like bindweed or grapevines. They must be cared for, and bound to a structure. And I've learned that I need to give myself a structure, or I can't naturally climb.

I am a rose.

Roses need work. They must be pruned. The pruning is painful, but without it they won't flower.

I am a rose.

Nobody cares about dog-roses, nobody notices them, but they grow wild wherever they please. The popular roses that everyone admires are sterile and can't spread: they survive because they're grafted onto a dog-rose root. The roses nobody cares about are the roses that keep the others alive.

I am a rose.

I grew up near one of the biggest rose nurseries in the country, so everywhere there was me, there were roses too. I fell into many a rosebush while I was learning to ride a bike. I carefully grew one up the side of the house, a yellow rose with a mind of its own: soon I had to leave it to its own devices because it had grown taller than my arms could reach.

I am a rose.

When I was about six I had a dream of a concentration camp. I had been imprisoned, along with many other humans, by gaseous aliens who lived on methane. The armed guards would float around our cabins and the parade ground, terrifying us as much as they intimidated us.

Of course when you're sent to the camps, they take everything away from you: all your property as well as your dreams and your name. But I'd smuggled in one memento: a small twig of rosewood. I kept it in the pocket of my grey uniform and squeezed it tight whenever I was homesick.

One day I realised that roses have thorns. And that was the day I used the rosewood to burst and kill the guards at the gate, and run free into the outside world. One small piece of reality had torn a hole in the nightmare.

I am a rose.

It's six years since I quit my PhD

Jun. 25th, 2017 03:57 pm
happydork: A graph-theoretic tree in the shape of a dog, with the caption "Tree (with bark)" (Default)
[personal profile] happydork
It’s nearly six years to the day since I got on a jet plane and flew away from the wreckage of my attempted PhD.

Quitting my PhD was the second best decision of my life (the best was marrying [personal profile] such_heights) and has brought me so much joy, happiness, and personal fulfilment.

I think a lot, on and off, about whether there’s anything that could have helped me quit it sooner. I suspect probably not, to be honest — all anyone could do was what they did do, which was love me, support me, and welcome me back with open arms when I did finally come home.

But for my past self, the one who got on that plane weighed down with ambivalence, here are a few things I’m glad you’ll learn:

Thoughts for a quitter )

Music meme

Jun. 25th, 2017 01:28 pm
[personal profile] swaldman
See here for explanation.

19.A song that makes you think about life

Rizzo's story is sadly overlooked in many productions of Grease, perhaps because this song is the only time that any of it is directly expressed (although it's very much there in the film, if one looks for it in her expressions and tones of voice) - but she's perhaps the only character who understands the whole game that everybody is playing, and conciously chooses how much to engage.

[syndicated profile] goodinparts_feed

Posted by Kathryn

In my experience, there’s nothing quite like being told notto do something to make it almost impossible to avoid it…A month ago, at a wedding, the preacher threw in an apparently randomline about not thinking about blue elephants, and I’m pretty confident that for the next couple of minutes nobody except the bride and groom managed to think about anything else at all. Apologies if you are now all busily pondering the same thing...May I call you back, for a minute or two at least?
You see, though the Bible famously reminds us not to be afraid 365 times, once for every day of the year, I must confess that much of the time I seem to be stuck on an recurrent leap day, the 366th, a day on which some degree of alarm is at least permissible. Over the past twelve months I’ve encountered similar feelingsin more and more people, in a variety of contexts. Suddenly it seems that we have become a fearful society, aware of divisions and distress in our own communities, dreading terrorist action at home and abroad
Don’t mistake me.
Knowledge is good. There is nothing whatever to be gained by retreating, ostrich-like, to some sort of spurious safety in a world where everyone behaves beautifully and thinks exactly the same as we do.We may not be happier knowing how some of our neighbours feel about life in this country, with how much passionate intensity a handful of people seem to hate western values and lifestyles...but it is better, surely, to know. Even if it makes us fearful for a while.
The question is, then, whether fear is actually the enemy of faith, or a natural part of the human condition in a world which is often precarious and where suddenly there seems, to my mind at least, to be a critical shortage of wise, compassionate adults in charge. We’re told, of course, that perfect love casts out fear...but it doesn’t take more than a second to examine our own hearts and recognise that we’re a long long way from reaching that particular milestone. My love is partial, sometimes conditional, lacking that self-giving heart that would show that I am making some headway as a disciple of Christ. Honestly, there’s lots of room for fear to creep in
So, is Jesus being reasonable when he says THREE TIMES in just five verses “Have no fear” “Do not fear” “Do not be afraid”?
His outlne of what will lie aheadfor the Christian community is far from reassuring. Listen.
I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.I have come to set a man against his father and a daughter against her mother….ones foes will be members of ones own household.
This isn't about Jews versus Christians. It's not about strangers betraying strangers. It's "all in the family," and far too close to home. And this is not, after all, surprising, because Jesus challenged his disciples – and STILL challenges US, to live into a new world order. It’s no longer families first (so perhaps it’s high time we renamed our Cathedral Children’s Church)…
Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me
That’s kind of uncompromising, isn’t it. It suggests that actually we might need to risk upsetting people quite often, if we’re intent on being true to the gospel. As someone who’d cheerfully walk barefoot to Edinburgh to avoid conflict that’s something ELSE to be afraid of…
Frustratingly, being a disciple is not about being popular, even within our own famiies. Even within our own CHURCH family. It’s about justice and joy, challenge and choice. About courage and hopes and dreams and sacrifice..It’s not about keeping people happy. it’s about putting Christ first...loving Him beyond all….being willing to take all kinds of risks for his sake.
And it’s not that we have to put Jesus first to WIN his love...it’s important to be clear about that. God loves each one of us without condition and without reserve (it’s that perfect love that casts out fear again). But by putting Jesus first we open ourselves to RECEIVE that love which is constantly available...setting aside all the alternative treasures, the other sources of security that might seem, for a while at least, more appealing.
And he doesn’t promise us security in their place. Sometimes, indeed, things will seem to go utterly, hopelessly wrong. Our Old Testament reading gives us a glimpse of this. We find ourselves with Hagar and Ishmael, exiled through no fault of their own, - caught up in the mess and muddle and questionable relationships of Abraham, father of a great nation...Here’s an excellent example of a family at odds – despite Abraham’s regular conversations with God and his obedience to follow wherever God leads. Sarah has played the “lawful wedded wife” card and had Hagar and Ishmael banished so their presence won’t compromise the future for her precious Isaac. So we see mother and son at the very end of their resources, gazing at death…
And then God speaks and says it again. Those four little words which echo throughout Scripture...those words God whispers in our ear, if we can only calm ourselves enough to listen
Do not be afraid”.
And God provides for them, in the midst of disaster. God meets their immediate need (there is water in the desert) and their existential need, too, for a lasting significance in the history of God’s people. God GETS what is important for them, and honours that...He does that for us too.
I love the last verses of the passage
God was with the boy and he grew up. He lived in the wilderness”
God is with US as well, and invites us into mature, grown-up discipleship., calls us to be not greater than the teacher, but as like him as we can manage. And, whatever our own wilderness experiences of worry and doubt, of inadequacy and failure, of fear and more fear God is with us in that too.
We can’t predict where our discipleship may take us, though we can be pretty certain that it will not always be along pleasant paths. But we CAN predict that the God who keeps loving count of the flight and fall of the sparrow will be with us on every step of the journey, leading us all to everlasting life.

Do not be afraid. You are loved and God is with you. 

Just One Thing (25 June 2017

Jun. 25th, 2017 12:13 pm
hollymath: (Default)
[personal profile] hollymath posting in [community profile] awesomeers
It's challenge time!

Comment with Just One Thing you've accomplished in the last 24 hours or so. It doesn't have to be a hard thing, or even a thing that you think is particularly awesome. Just a thing that you did.

Feel free to share more than one thing if you're feeling particularly accomplished!

Extra credit: find someone in the comments and give them props for what they achieved!

Nothing is too big, too small, too strange or too cryptic. And in case you'd rather do this in private, anonymous comments are screened. I will only unscreen if you ask me to.


Events of note

Jun. 25th, 2017 10:04 am
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
Last weekend we made a family visit to the inlaws in High Wycombe, for some low-key hanging-out time together for the cousins to play together and the adults to gossip.  It was Too Hot, but at least every train on the way home had aircon, as did the taxi.  We experimentally departed from Cambridge North, as we are roughly equidistant from the two railway stations.  Advantage: not going through the centre of Cambridge. Disadvantages: only one direct train per hour to London on the weekend, no cafe or shops (yet), slightly more expensive by taxi.  But it was worth conducting the experiment to be sure.

We all struggled with the heat this week.  This house does a good cross-breeze when such a thing is worth doing - this week that was usually from approx 9pm to 7am, so a lot of opening and closing windows and doors according to temperature and people being awake.  We acquired a standing fan to help. I did a lot of waking up about 5am to open things and then droop back on my bed waiting for the breeze to help. I think I'd be a lot less resentful of the lost sleep if I'd been able to be productive with the time, but no.

I went out to a PARTY yesterday and enjoyed catching up with people, and being introduced to Subjective Guess Who?  This is played using the standard board game set, but you can only ask questions which have no objective answer - some memorable ones from last night included "Have they ever played World of Warcraft?" and "Are they a morning person?".  The kibbitzing from the audience is the best part.

Going to the party was utterly self-indulgent given the state of my studying since the election. Today will probably not include much studying either, as plans already include: taking C to see Transformers: The Last Knight, attempting to get some sandals beforehand, getting in my weekly call to my mother before she gets on a bus to San Francisco, and making the cheating version of Tudor costume for C's class trip to Kentwell this week.

Music meme

Jun. 25th, 2017 08:27 am
[personal profile] swaldman
Continuing, after a gap...
See here for explanation.

18.A song from the year you were born

Among plenty of other things, this allowed me to take my pick from The Wall.

[syndicated profile] chantblog_feed

Posted by bls

De Ventre Matris Meae is the Introit for the Feast of St. John Baptist, June 24. It's sung here by Schola Sanctae Sunnivae & Hartkeriana.

The text comes from Isaiah 49; here's the Latin, along with an English translation from Divinum Officium:
De ventre matris meæ vocávit me Dóminus in nómine meo: et pósuit os meum ut gládium acútum: sub teguménto manus suæ protéxit me, et pósuit me quasi sagíttam eléctam

From my mother’s womb the Lord called me by me name, and made of me a sharp-edged sword; He concealed me in the shadow of His arm, and made me a polished arrow.

Here's the chant score:

Here are the actual verses from Isaiah 49:
1 Give ear, ye islands, and hearken, ye people from afar. The Lord hath called me from the womb, from the bowels of my mother he hath been mindful of my name.

2 And he hath made my mouth like a sharp sword: in the shadow of his hand he hath protected me, and hath made me as a chosen arrow: in his quiver he hath hidden me.

In the Cantus database this chant is only listed as a Matins Responsory; not sure why that would be.  Here's an image of that Responsory from the Antiphonarium Massiliense; the large red "D" is where the chant begins:

Interesting, though:  I don't find this listed as a Matins Responsory in Divinum Officium.   So, not quite sure what's going on there.

Here's the famous Deesis Mosaic from Hagia Sophia; that's John the Baptist on the right:

This is from Wikipedia's Deesis entry:

In Byzantine art, and later Eastern Orthodox art generally, the Deësis or Deisis (Greek: δέησις, "prayer" or "supplication"), is a traditional iconic representation of Christ in Majesty or Christ Pantocrator: enthroned, carrying a book, and flanked by the Virgin Mary and St. John the Baptist, and sometimes other saints and angels. Mary and John, and any other figures, are shown facing towards Christ with their hands raised in supplication on behalf of humanity.
In early examples, it was often placed on the templon beam in Orthodox churches or above doors, though it also appears on icons and devotional ivories.


The Wild Ewt of the Plains of Canada

September 2013

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