warriorsavant: (Books (Trinity College Library))
Alexandra Fuller's "Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight." It's autobiographical of a very young girl growing up in a family of basically poor white farmers in the Africa in the 1970's(?). In the intial parts they live in Rhodesia during the war for independence. It is raw, gritty, mostly well-written, and gives a lens into the times and psyches.

Dorothy Sayers' "Lord Peter Wimsey" series. Growing up, I mostly read SF. Sometime around college, I had read pretty much everything worth reading. In Medical School I started reading mysteries, mostly classic British mysteries. Initially that was the influence from my gf from the era, who was a classmate of mine. Oddly enough, she was from Montreal originally, but moved to the US when she was 3(?), but her parents were old-line English-Canadian of the "we're more English than the English" stock, and still strongly identified with the British Isles. Our favorite of the era (or should I say favourite) was Lord Peter. I wanted to be him when I grew up. (Not having been born a aristocrat in an era when that mattered; nor having been born rich, which always matters; was a bit of a handicap in that ambition, not to mention his being fictional.) Recently a Gentle Reader mentioned Jill Paton Walsh's reviving of the character with "Thrones and Dominations." I got it from the library, started reading it, then realized I had read it years ago. It's not an imitation exactly, in that Paton Walsh was working from notes/drafts that Sayers had started. She's since written two more, which I'm tentatively planning on reading. For comparison purposes, I went back and started re-reading one of the actual, original series, "The Five Read Herrings," and just couldn't get into it. Maybe it wasn't one of her best, or more likely my tastes have changed. As to the new series by Paton Walsh, it was well done. Held my interest adequately, but no more than that. I seem to remember feeling the same way the first time I read it (but that was literally decades ago, so not certain). Like other series that try to take up where the original author left off, sometimes it's too well done. That is, they tend to overdo the details and mannerism of the original character. I seem to recall feeling that way about Robert Goldsborough's taking up of Rex Stout's "Nero Wolfe" stories. Not saying it shouldn't be done, but just very hard to get exactly the right flavor.

I already posted about Ben Schott's "Jeeves and the King of Clubs." I grew up adoring the Wooster and Jeeves stories by P.G. Wodehouse. This novel, approved by the estate, claims to be an homage to body of works, but could equally be a sequel, pastiche, parody, or all of the above. Overall, I liked it. Some of it went well outside what Bertie Wooster's world would have allowed, and some of it made too liberal use of the mannerism embedded in the stories, but overall well done. I hope he'll write another one, which P.G.. can't, what with being dead. Such state being an handicap to writing, although not necessarily to being published, and certainly not to being read. I just reread "Jeeves and the Feudal Spirit." While not as fall-on-the-floor-laughingly funny as I found them to be first time around (xxx decades ago), I still really enjoyed it.

BTW, the Wooster & Jeeves, and the Peter Whimsey books were all made into TV plays, back when I did watch TV, and they were very well done.

Mostly I have no energy for serious reading. I'm tired, I have a lot going on, and I have to do serious reading as part of my job (although there are some journal articles that are ludicrous, but not necessarily comic). On the list of "very well written fluff," there's David Weber's "Honor Harrington" series of space operas. I suppose one could think of it as a continuation of C. S. Forester's "Horatio Hornblower" series. If the brave Captain had lived in the 40th (?) century, had a star ship, and was a woman. Except even more interesting than that.
warriorsavant: (Space-horsehead nebula)
Was excited to see this tonight. Was supposed to be visible as a full eclipse of the moon from Montreal. I've seen other full, lunar eclipses, and frankly they are more interesting in theory than in practice, but I'm nerdy enough to want to see it. Unfortunately, the best laid plans of mice and nerds gang aft a-gley. It's snowing heavily. Very pretty from inside my warm house (although the recently-bought cover blew off Nom's car). Unlikely to stop by tonight. Grrr. If do get to see it, will post again.
warriorsavant: (Dr. Injecto)
I was seeing a patient in Room 1, when I heard Evil Secretary yelling, "Doc, doc!" very loud and excited and anxious. Not like her. I thought someone was assaulting her. I ran out. There was a dementor hovering over the patient who had just come out of Room 2. I pulled out my wand and exclaimed, "expecto patronum!" driving it away. (From Harry Potter Does Dermatology, the about to be released 8th book in the series.)

Uh, yeah, okay, not quite. I'll get my fantasy life in check. What actually happened was that I had seen a patient in Room 2, and removed a small growth. We usually can tell when a patient is feeling faint or dizzy, and get them lying or sitting down quickly (such as the next patient who was in Room 2). This makes only twice in, uh, never mind how many years, that someone slipped past our guards. Anyhow, he seemed fine, said thank you & goodbye, and went to the front desk while I went into Room 1. Apparently he suddenly went from 'fine' to starting to fall over. Evil Secretary grabbed him, but she was on the other side of the reception desk. When I came out in response to her shout, she was leaning across the desk, holding him under the arms. Couldn't let go or he'd fall, but had no way to get around the desk either. I got him under the arms, and laid him down with something soft under his head and a stool to raise his feet. Turned out he hadn't eaten all day. Those are always the ones who get dizzy, combination of low blood sugar and anxiety. Frankly, if I don't have a nibble mid-morning, I get light-headed by the end of the morning (just the blood sugar, no anxiety), and this was the early afternoon when the gentlemen saw me and had his episode. We got him some juice (we keep some juice boxes in the fridge), and half of E.S.'s granola bar. After a while, he felt better, sat in a chair for a while, and when felt even better, took a taxi home. I think we're going to lay in a supply of not-very-good chocolate (because if it's good chocolate, well, I have no will power and would eat it all). Raises the blood sugar, and besides, everyone knows that's what you need after a dementor attack.
warriorsavant: (Space-horsehead nebula)
Friday, Nom & the kids were visiting the grandparents. I had gotten home early from work. I had a ton of stuff to do, but I needed some down time and I had the whole house to myself. Obviously time for wild partying… yeah, right. I took a bath, all by myself! Then watched part of a Dr. Who. (I still have 2-3 that haven't watched from last season, need to get to them before the next seasons starts at Christmas.) They came home when I was almost at the end, and the kids wanted to watch with me. In the past, it scared the dickens out of them (and did when we tried to watch more the next day), but they were good with it that time. Only problem was that Hedgefund would ask me at least once/minute what was happening and why. In a Dr. Who episode. Would have trouble explaining that to an adult. Anyhow, still great father-child activity for the nerd set.
warriorsavant: (Staten Island Ferry)
Was in NYC week before last. Haven't had time to write about it. 'till now. Family: One of Nom's cousins on her mother's side got married. Big family on that side, cousins in Montreal, NYC, Maryland, California, Texas, and even Paris (France, not Texas). Every 2-3 years someone gets married and they have a family reunion at the same time. I think if no one has plans to get married after 3 years, they hold a lottery and draft someone to have nuptials as an excuse to have a reunion. Maybe not, but still it is a nice touch to have reunions. I usually sit at the table with all the other white guys who married into the family; they're both quite nice. We used it as a reason to have a mini-vacation and so I could see my sister and friends. With two small ones, and the in-laws, driving wasn't practical, so flew, and rented a van once down there. Surprisingly no problems with flights, the only travel kerfuffle was the traffic getting out to Long Island (suburban to NYC, where both the wedding and the reunion were held, 1-hour-ish away). I expect bad traffic in NYC, but it was weird, practically at a stand-still up to a certain point, for no obvious reason: no construction at that point, no accidents, just crawling along, then suddenly moving.

Wednesday )

Thursday )

Friday )

Saturday )

Sunday/Monday )

Random Thoughts/Comments )
warriorsavant: (Cafe)
This post not all about kids, but admittedly mostly. Was going to post this yesterday, but decided needed at least one serious post, otherwise. I'd be having a bad case of being that guy who posts incessantly only about his kids. Yeah, "warriorsavantdaddy," that's me.

The new house. We really love it. It's very bright, very classy and classic styling, high ceilings with moulding, lots of woodwork, beautiful layout with different sightlines in different directions.

The new office. Also very bright and classy. Really do need to tweak the layout of things in each exam room. In my old place, could basically sit in one spot and pivot to reach everything. Highly efficient way to work. Although these rooms are actually smaller, they are not yet as neatly laid out. It's annoying me, but haven't had time to tweak it yet; too many other things to do. Taxes mostly in to the accountant now.

Sitting in the back of your own car. Interesting feeling. The other day Nom w/ kids and I arrived home at the same time (warned you there'd be kids in this post). Wallstreet decided he wanted to play in Papa's car instead of going into the house. We both climbed into the back (later into the front where he sat in my lap and "drove" and also pulled everything out of the glove compartment). Sitting like that, the car changes from being a vehicle to being a small room. Interesting psychological perspective.

Hedgefund. Speaking of cars, she's become a back seat driver. At 4 years old. If she starts saying "mind the lorry," I'm sending her back. (Hyacinth from "Keeping Up Appearances" a BritCom used to like.) She also has become quite talkative in general, and much happier. That makes me incredibly glad, I was so worried she was depressive. She is also quite inventive about names and how she addresses us. Sometimes it's "hey guys" (from the timbre of voice and facial expression, I think she's imitating one of the daycare teachers), sometimes it's "hey parents," sometimes it's Papa Savant and Mommy Savant (I think from "Peppa Pig," a current popular children's show, the parents being Daddy Pig and Mommy Pig). Lately, she was mad at Wallstreet and started calling him Blue Dragon. Dragon because he was being mean, and blue because that's his color. His room is painted blue. Hers is green. Did you think I was going to write "pink?" Silly Reader, stop thinking in clichés. Green is her favorite color, has been as long as she could barely indicate a choice, so we painted her room green. The master bedroom is red (actually 3 walls are pale gray, and the back wall is deep red). Since we Savants like dragons, she (mostly) stopped using it as a negative, and now Wallstreet is Blue Dragon, she is Green Dragon (of sometimes Hedgefund Big Sister Green Dragon), we are Papa Red Dragon and Mommy Red Dragon. I have a hypothesis that color in dragons is multi-genetic, which effects how the colors breed, so perfectly reasonable for 2 red dragons to produce one green and one blue dragon. I'm putting in for grant to study it.

And oh yeah, "Happy Spring," apparently that being the season when it's only minus-a bit, and not too much snow forecast for tomorrow morning.
warriorsavant: (Renovations)
Part of the beauty of the house was the old woodwork. Well, once you stripped away a century of varnish and grime. You can really appreciate the depth and pattern of the woodgrain. Here's some of the doors (it's the end of the main hallway, powder room on the left, wardrobe on the right, which is the one with the more interesting woodgrain).

Picture 1 - long view )

Coming in a little closer, you can really start to appreciate the beauty of the woodgrain

A bit closer )

Coming in still closer, your mind's eye actually makes it look like imagines of something, like you "see" in tree grain, or clouds. (Sorry, this one's a little out of focus, but you can still get the impression.)

Closer still, your eyes play tricks on you. )

I think I mentioned that this is a wardrobe door. In fact, it's a double-ended wardrobe. One door opens to the front hallway, the other opens to the family room. So in fact, it's a wardrobe that is also a passage. Sound familiar?

Look again )


warriorsavant: (Default)

Nom, ba ngaio, and the kids are out shopping. I could be doing productive work (well, did a little), but am enjoying lazing around the condo, relaxing, and not having to talk to anyone. This is not to say I did nothing. I ate, napped, drank coffee, took a bath, and watched the first episode of the current season of Dr. Who (thanks to [personal profile] captainsblog for letting me know it was happening). 

It was okay. Background music too loud and sometimes covered up the dialog. Am reserving judgement on the new Companion, the character isn't fleshed out yet. And who is the bald guy with glasses (possibly robot) and what's his backstory. The story itself was good, but not thrilling. We'll see. 

Did a few productive things. Cleaned up a little (Our cleaning lady is on vacation. I should have  paid her to take the kids. Travel is so relaxing for the parents broadening.) Backed up Nom's computer (strenuous work, hand-carrying all those bits and bytes to storage) Took out the trash (traditional husbandly duty, that one). Posting to DW. Was almost time for another nap, but Nom just called from the garage (basement of the building) for me to come schlep groceries. *Sigh* My life is so hard.

warriorsavant: (Sword & Microscope 1)
Last post I mentioned actually attending a sports event. The current Bell Centre is rather soulless compared to the old Forum, but it gets the job done. Of course, they have souvenir stands, selling, cups, hats, and, well, take a look...
Souvenirs )

Don't worry, even if I'm introducing them to sports/religion, I'm not neglecting their nerd side
Nerdwear )

warriorsavant: (HHG-Throne of fruit)
Actually, I'm not, but this needed to be posted.

The link is to a short “article” in one of the Derm journals. Notable Notes are somewhat whimsical pieces, <1 page long. Sometimes bits of history, sometimes oddball items like dermatological conditions eponym named after food (eg cherry angioma). To this roll call of pseudo brilliance, comes Dermatology and Comic Book Characters. No doubt should stand alongside James Kakalios’ full length book, The Physics of Superheros, which likely you’ve both read.


Link to article


Jan. 17th, 2016 05:37 pm
warriorsavant: (Sword & Microscope 1)
Saw the new Star Wars movie. Loved it. Admittedly was derivative from the first one (Cantina, check. Planet-sized weapon, check. Evil wizard (uh Sith Lord), check). On the other hand, that's what we loved about the first one. The effects in this one were better, without it's being all effects and nothing else. There was young love, but also old love, which was sweet and different in a blockbuster movie. There was action, bad SF tropes, evil bad guys, heroic good guys, and comic sidekicks. All told, worthwhile. BTW, saw it in 3-D (b/c that what was playing at the hour we got to the theater) and actually enjoyed it more b/c of that. One thing I found personally amusing, the evil bad guy (Darth Ren, or Phylo Dough, or whatever he was called) looks like our current political leader, Prime Minister Good Hair. Might explain how he got elected, and what he'll have in store for us.

Hedgefund has always detested her high chair for sitting at the table. Not sure why, but would cry if we put her in it. Sometimes did so anyhow, sometimes she'd eat sitting on Papa's lap or standing on his chair, which was cute the first several times, then got annoying. Now she wants her own chair. Not a high chair, a regular chair, sitting next to me. Problem is that it's too low for her, and can't find a decent phone book anymore (dang internet), so pile up a few pillows. Sometimes I hold her (she still hasn't entirely mastered the household rule about falling off of things, which states, "don't fall off of things"). She doesn't always like that, and waves my hand away. I can hear her thoughts, "Papa, I want to do this myself.

Earring. I'm wearing one now. I used to wear one many years ago. Only one, in my right ear.
Back then, I often got asked "why that ear."
Ans: "I don't have a left earlobe." (It was bitten off in a moment of passion. I was born that way.)
"But are you trying to make some sort of statement?
"Yes, I'm stating that I don't have a left earlobe. Look!"
"But, is there some significance."
Anyhow, in a fit of adolescent rebellion, have started wearing one again. I had it made at the same time we made our wedding rings, but didn't want to start wearing both at once.

Pix )

Wallstreet has a fairly limited repertoire so far, but what he does, he's really good at: smiling, wriggling, talking, grabbing my finger. A true champ in the making. Oh yes, also good at pooing and peeing. Unlike his sister, he has the extra attachment for distance and aiming, but I'm much too clever to let him get any on me.

Tried a new place for breakfast, Hof Kelsten. They were billed as making the best rye bread, croissants, rugelach, and chaussons in Montreal. Y'know, one of those East-European-Jewish-Parisian-French places. The rugelach had a little too much jam for my tastes, but the croissants are perfect and the rye bread is maybe the best I've ever tasted.
warriorsavant: (Computer-steampunk)
As I was heading out to meet a colleague, I saw a young man in a futuristic-looking silver jacket with a lightning bolt on it, and tights with garters. Say what?

Well, they are filming the latest X-men movie in Montreal. (BTW, if there another generation of X-men, will they be the Y-men? Millennial-persons? Probably not, it will more likely be called X-men Deep Space Nine.) Anyhow, he might have wandered off the set, but they usually don't do that, and besides, at closer look, the jacket looked a bit homemade. Very good for homemade, but not quite big-budget-Hollywood-movie.

Maybe there's a SciFi convention in town that I wasn't aware of? I generally don't pay attention to the "what's happening" section of the local papers, what with rarely reading the local papers.

As I was pondering this, I heard something on the radio about the Gay Pride Parade. Yeah, that was it; he'd wandered off from the Parade.

Hey, maybe it's a combination? Maybe he's part of a new generation of Gay Superheros: Mr. Gay, or the 46XY-men, or Homosexuality Lad. He wouldn't quite be the first. Many of you Gentle Readers already know Low Pressure Lad, who, disguised as [livejournal.com profile] oxymoron67 is a milder mannered blogger for a great metropolitan website. His superpowers include weather control and extreme sarcasm.

Anyhow, beastly hot weather for a parade. Maybe they should have had Low Pressure Lad as an honored special guest. Meeting with colleague was in an air conditioned restaurant; conversation and food both good.
warriorsavant: (Time)
I understand it is a holiday in that small, densely populated country to our south. Have fun. In an email, [livejournal.com profile] ravensron asked me if we had July 4th in Canada, then answered his own question with "of course, it comes right after July 3rd." Wrong. When those people Canadians call the "United Empire Loyalists" ran like heck relocated north after the American Revolution (e.g. those people Americans refer to as the "Tories" or "Losers"), they changed the calendar. Much as some high-rise buildings don't have a 13th floor, Canada doesn't have a 4th of July. We skip from the 3rd to the 5th. Our calendar is out of sync with the rest of the world until August 1st, which, of course, happens right after our July 32nd

One might note that this is being posted on July 3rd. That's because July 4th is so important and sacred to Americans, it was decided to honor it on another day. I used to think it was wrong to celebrate holidays on other days just to have a long weekend, but then I decided it makes sense. Unless you are Dr. Who, you aren't actually celebrating on the day itself, but a year(s) later when the Earth has moved into the same position relative to the sun. Whatever. So if we're not all going to travel back in time to the actual event (or even forward in time to the event celebrating a holiday not yet declared), then we can celebrate it whenever it works

Which Who?

May. 26th, 2015 08:17 am
warriorsavant: (Time)
During my meagre fits of treadmill, I tend to watch Netflix to try to stave off the boredom, mostly Dr. Who, the new series (the one that started in 2004). Recently have been alternating with episodes of classical Dr. Who (the original series 1963-1989). It's really, really hokey, and even as camp, can't watch too much at once. However, I enjoy the concept of following the adventures of this time traveler in what, is in effect, two different time streams simultaneously.
warriorsavant: (Sword & Microscope 1)
As requested by many of my Gentle Readers (well one, [livejournal.com profile] michikatinski), a picture of Dr. Injecto in his Superhero garb.

Dr. Injecto - cowled  )
warriorsavant: (Sword & Microscope 1)
Pi Day is, of course, 3/14 (or 3.14 to the purist), named for a number, that like many of us, is irrational.
It is epic Pi Day, because, writing the date American style (which I rarely do anymore), it is 3/14/15 or 3.1415. Allowing that I posted this at 9:26:55 AM, that makes it 3.141592653.

warriorsavant: (Meh)
I’ve spent most of my life as a card carrying Nerd. Read The Hobbit before most people could even read. Adored Firefly & Harry Potter. Can quote whole passages from Princess Bride. However, somewhere around the last Harry Potter movie, I found I just couldn’t care about anything new in the Nerd Canon. I realized it when people started getting into Game of Thrones / Song of Fire and Ice, and I just couldn’t be bothered, couldn’t be bothered learning about yet another imaginary realm. Some of that is the structure of the books/TV series: you have to know that so-and-so is the 2nd cousin of the Duke of Whatever, and therefore it’s imperative that he marry the 3rd daughter of the Count of SomethingOrOther, because then they would be in a position to BlahBlahBlah. Yeah, whatever. I barely remember who my actual friends are married to, ain’t putting that much brain power into the relationships of people who don’t exist. Maybe it’s with the arrival of Hedgefund, I’m just too busy, although I think it started before that. Maybe I’ve just grown up… naw, that can’t be it, too much evidence to the contrary. Maybe I’ve just reached the maximum charge on my Nerd Capacitors; have to shed some load before can accept any more. Whatever, not handing in my Nerd Membership Card yet, but not adding any new things to the list.
warriorsavant: (Sword & Microscope 1)
Was walking out of Montreal Children's Hospital* and noticed this little statue:


Had almost gone past it, when noticed read the (bilingual) plaque, which is clearly meant to go explain how the statue is meant to be inspirational:

Clearly whoever wrote that in French is a Starwars fan, since it translates to "May the Force be With Me." Whoever wrote the English just didn't get it.

*No problems with Hedgefund, had a seminar with our Residents and that was a convenient place to meet.
warriorsavant: (Space-horsehead nebula)
Who was not on first. Who was on second. What wasn't on first either, Quatermass was. (In fact, don't think there was a What.)

If you're confused, I'm being an über-nerd while channeling Abbott & Costello.

Everyone thinks British SciFi TV started with Dr. Who. (Not Christopher Ecclestonn in 2005, William Hartnell in 1963.) Don't get me wrong, I'm rather a Whovian myself (did I mention nerd?), but The Doctor wasn't the first, Professor Quatermass of the British Experimental Rocket Group was. According to my highly in-depth scientific research (Wikipedia & IMDB) Quatermass first aired in 1953, ten years before The Doctor, a year even before Rocky Jones, Space Ranger in the US. Just got it on DVD. It was, well, rather 1950's TV/movie SF, which is to say, horrid by modern standards, but fun in a very campy way. But fear not, Quatermass saves the Earth from being invaded, all ends well.


warriorsavant: (Default)

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