Monday, June 28, 2010
I was in my room, alone, at the top of the house, when I realized a breach was in progress, and I was standing on the terrace that connected to the top floor garage where our cars were parked. I could see down the hillside to where the intruders were attempting to get in. I had my iPhone in my hand, and even though the intruders were very far away, I was being cautious about what I actually said as I talked to the 911 operator I'd called.
When it was time to get up, my alarm was no longer set, which I found curious, because I had been careful to turn it on and set it for 5:30 (the absolute latest I can get out of bed and into the shower) before shutting off the light. Did I turn it off in my sleep? Did Franny? Or was it one of the intruders?
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Oh, and at the end of it all I had a proposal of marriage and an invitation to go to Hawaii.
It seems stupid to have the anxiety dream after the fact, doesn't it? Not that I'm going to Hawaii, I just mean that show was pretty successful, my job was easy and mostly unseen and stress-free... and it's over.
Until next time, I guess!
Friday, June 25, 2010
So have you been wondering where I've been? Today, I can say with absolutely 100% accuracy, that I have been sleeping. Oh, I got up once or twice to read, use the restroom, hang out with a kitty cat or two, and eat something, but other than that, I think I probably spent about 10 hours in bed.
My very comfy, cozy bed. Franny approves.
Monday, June 21, 2010
So I guess the only solution is to wait for those of us who took typing in school to just up and die?
Yeah, I know, there are more important things to worry about but this one thing drives me crazy.
From Wikipedia's entry on "sentence spacing" (also, I know, Wikipedia... right. This is a long sample. I suggest you skim):
James Felici, author of the Complete Manual of Typography, says that the topic of sentence spacing is "the debate that refuses to die ... In all my years of writing about type, it's still the question I hear most often, and a search of the web will find threads galore on the subject". This subject is still widely debated today because many typists were taught to use double sentence spacing in school. As a result, there is a common misconception that double sentence spacing is "correct", even given modern technology and proportional fonts. This is similar to other obsolete typewriter conventions, practiced in deference to its "severe technical limitations", that are still used by writers. These include the use of prime marks (or "dumb quotes") for quotation marks, underlining words in place of italics, and using hyphens to approximate en and em dashes.
Many people are opposed to single sentence spacing for various reasons. Some state that the habit of double spacing is too deeply ingrained to change. Many claim that additional space between sentences makes text "look better" or easier to read. Proponents of double sentence-spacing also state that some publishers may still require double spaced manuscript submissions from authors. A key example noted is the screenwriting industry's monospaced "standard" for screenplay manuscripts—Courier, 12-point font—although some works on screenwriting indicate that proportional fonts may be used. Finally, although some reliable sources state simply that writers should follow their particular style guide, proponents of double-spacing caution that publisher's guidance takes precedence, including those that ask for double sentence-spaced manuscripts.
In opposition to these ideas, many experts state that double sentence spacing was only relevant when faced with the limitations of the typewriter, and is now obsolete for most uses—especially given the capabilities of modern computers and digital fonts. Although typewriter users had only two choices (to strike the space bar once or twice), modern proportional fonts allow users to manually adjust sentence spacing to thousandths of an inch for visually pleasing typesetting. However, it is acceptable even for monospaced fonts to be single spaced today. Another consideration is that, since terminal punctuation marks the end of a sentence and additional spacing is itself punctuation, additional spacing is redundant.
Some assert that, because the double-space typewriter convention is still being taught widely in school, students will later be forced to relearn how to type. Although a small number of style guides in the United States allow double sentence-spacing for draft work, no known style or language guide indicates that double-sentence spacing is proper for final or published work today—and many state that it is incorrect. Publishers usually require manuscripts to be submitted as they will appear in publication—single sentence-spaced. Many writing sources recommend that prospective authors remove extra spaces before submitting manuscripts, although publishers will use software to remove the spaces before final publication. Finally, some experts state that, while double spacing sentences in unpublished papers and informal use (such as e-mail) might be fine, double sentence spacing in desktop-published (DTP) works will make the final result look "unprofessional" and "foolish".
I learned to type in 1988 or '89 in a class where my work was routinely posted on the wall with all the other perfect work (I think it's very funny that the teacher never noticed that interspersed with all the examples from the book that I'd typed correctly, I almost always included the lyrics to whatever Cure or R.E.M. song was taking up space in my brain. Rock of the 80s!). We've previously established that for the most part I love to read and to learn but I'm not a big fan of school. I tend to fall asleep in classroom situations; I can't help myself. My typing class was a big loud room full of like-minded bored students, and I, for some reason, excelled. Maybe it reminded me of the noisy band room. Whatever. We were taught to double-space at the end of a period because we were typing on 50 year old machines that always needed a new ribbon. They were called "typewriters."
Years later, in 1997 I took a job working for an optometrist in Sherman Oaks. I'd kept up my typing skills thanks to an (ex) fiance who was studying for his Master's degree in Sociology, and his typing skills weren't as good as mine so I did a lot it for him. It was while typing his papers that I learned of the lack of a need to double-space at the end of a sentence. (I also did some of my own college work, albeit, much less enthusiastically.) Anyway, working for Dr. Pearl (no, not that Dr. Pearle) required me to type a lot, and I did it uncomplainingly, though I'd since broken up with that guy. Still, there was no extraneous spacing going on and we were all happy. Well, maybe not my ex.
Then I had to leave that job when Dr. Pearl sold his practice, and I went back to the world of retail (where my manager hand drew his sales reports) and my typing was limited to inter-store email, which were always formatted correctly, though the subject matter was usually silly.
When I got my County job, I had to type again, and a lot, and I found many people still clutching to their double-space at the end of a sentence habit. I ignore it when I can, but sometimes, if I get to edit something, I get rid of them, quietly, with little fanfare or griping.
It wasn't hard for me to quit doing it. I think it took less than a day to get over it. You can too. You are not a typesetter, there is no need for it. Let it go. Let it go. Let it go.
Friday, June 18, 2010
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
When he got home, I had just indulged in a feeding frenzy (a bowl of pasta, a very small chicken burrito that consisted of just chicken and a wheat tortilla and was surprisingly delicious, and an endless supply of chips and salsa), as well as a whole episode of "Intervention" on TV, a show he doesn't let me watch when he's home because it's too intense. Well, yeah. A show about boring interventions wouldn't be very good TV, now would it? Oh, yeah, and I also watched Bradley Whitford's new show "The Good Guys." I liked it. Anyway, we finally went to bed, where we tossed, turned, and somehow managed to push all the blankets to the foot of the bed (when I got up at 2:30 to go to the bathroom, I had about two inches of sheet clenched in my hand; I tripped over the other blankets).
Anyway, I got up eventually and and came into the office, where I sat down and wrote this.
Yeah, I know: that plant looks pretty dead to me, too.
Monday, June 14, 2010
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
I realized that there was no way I could complete it and be off all day on election day (today) so on Thursday, I contacted (by email) the person at the Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk's office who had been assigned to me. She wrote back and confirmed receiving my message, and I thought she would contact the inspector running the polling place I'd been assigned to and let him know he was down a man, or assign someone else to his location.
As of 6 a.m. this morning, he knew nothing about that. He called the house (I was gone already, on my way to work) and left a message. Patrick called me and gave me the guy's info, and I called him back. He said that there were only 2 people at the location, and that he hadn't been notified that I wasn't coming. I was sorry, but you know, work comes first, and I did let them know.
So. Now my work day is over (assignment completed! Yay!) and I'm about to head over to that polling place so I can vote.
I just hope it doesn't go this way:
We should take a cue from the state of Oregon and let everyone vote by mail. Wouldn't that be easier? and cheaper? From my experiences as a pollworker (always just a clerk: the responsibility of being an inspector just isn't worth the tiny bit of extra pay), it's a complex and incredibly intricate operation. Anything can go wrong, and often does. The training is a joke (there's so much to know and so little time to absorb it all), and by using volunteers, well, let's just say that while some people are responsible and conscientious... some people just aren't, and the county doesn't seem to do a great job of weeding those people out.
I don't know. There's got to be a better way. Did you vote yet today? You have until 8 p.m.
Sunday, June 6, 2010
This cooking tip has been brought to you today by... and by... and by... and by...
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
Actually, no, I couldn't tell. There may be distinguishing features that over time I might learn to recognize... but to me they looked like very young Hispanic kids with the Metallica songbook memorized, rocking some very cool hair.
A tall, beautiful African-American woman, probably in her 50s or 60s, just walked by. Her hair was short and almost bouffant-like. She was wearing a long floaty lime green cotton dress that reminded me of a muumuu. It had delicate cut outs at the neck, and triangular shaped sleeves that came to the middle of her forearms. Her shoes were gold flip flops and she was accompanied by an older gentleman who limped. He was wearing sunglasses, faded blue jeans with suspenders, and sneakers. They went into the shoe repair store but came back out almost immediately.
People watching sure is fun.
Tonight's show was picked as one of LA Weekly's "Recommended Events": http://www.laweekly.com/events/compton-metal-night-949699/ (interestingly entitled: "Compton Metal Night").
Look for me: I'm the drummer's roadie.
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
I probably shouldn't tell you that I was slightly more worried about the "How Am I Driving" sticker with telephone number (which rings at my desk anyway) than the whole "runaway" Prius thing, right?
Anyway, I made it downtown and back without a complaint.
I bought this tube of cherry flavored Carmex yesterday and I've been trying to unscrew the top all fucking day. I need some help over here. Seriously.