Fair Words Butter No Parsnips

weather: clear
outside: 26.8°C
mood: ...

    Words are but wind that do from men proceed
    None but Chamelions on bare Air can feed
    Great men large hopeful promises may utter
    But words did never Fish or Parsnips butter.

-- John Taylor, the Water Poet


Forgetting How to Ride a Bicycle

weather: cloudy
outside: 17.5°C
mood: amused
BTW, it turns out that you can forget how to ride a bicycle. It takes decades, but you definitely can lose it.

This was one of the stories my Mother-In-Law told me when she came back from her enormously long stay in Taiwan this year.

She tried to ride a bicycle again. And couldn't. =)


Random Childhood Memory: Dessert Loophole

weather: partially sunny
outside: 21.4°C
mood: amused
Like most family rules, I was also only allowed dessert after I finished my dinner. I figured out a loophole and it took a while to settle it.

I was definitely still in Elementary school. I was pondering the circular nature of the days of the week and I realized that time is continuous. I had realized that any time after dinner is still "after dinner"... even the next day.

I skipped dessert one evening and the next evening, argued that it was still "after dinner" for last night. Thus, I should be allowed dessert before tonight's dinner.

My parents are amused now, but oh, the drama that this caused back then was unbelievable. I had a good one. They knew it. And I knew it. But they were parents and couldn't let me win. I get that now. =)

Eventually, I fought hard enough for my Dessert Rights that I was allowed dessert before or after dinner if I wanted to, but on the condition that I finished at least one reasonable helping of dinner. And if I didn't, it would be a whack with the stick end of the Chinese feather duster.

I thought that was fair and I took the bargain =)


Life, the Universe and Useless Subject Lines

weather: sunny
outside: 16.9°C
mood: ...
Every time someone new adds me to their Friends List, I think I should write something. I feel bad knowing that they've added a dud. =)

Not too much up with me lately. Work is work. Lots of progress being made. Sometimes, that's an uncomfortable place to be, but we need it to learn and grow. We SO need this.

In non-work, we're looking at houses again. It seems to be a seller's market right now where we are. Houses are being snapped up almost as soon as they're being listed. All the ones we looked at that I quite liked, I didn't like enough to want to buy. There were so many "if only this" or "if only that". There was a log-cabin-ish style one that I really liked, but the nicer/newer renovated bedrooms were on the wrong floor for me =P

In other non-work, I'm still playing WoW. There is still a stigma to it and people still make fun of the fact that I take it semi-seriously. Everything I do, I take at least semi-seriously, so this isn't an exception. I've found that there's usually a jolt of realization in their eyes when I say, "you wouldn't be making fun of me if this were a sports team."

The Brother-in-Law Boy and his fiancée are on a competitive dragonboat team. They practice a few nights a week. I've seen him do weight training on his own time on non-rowing nights. I don't hear anyone making wise cracks about their rowing addiction. =)

My Enhancement Shaman is still raiding new content though. Usually people will do the 10-man Normal Ulduar raids first, then the 25-man Heroic Ulduar because it's harder. But I've nearly downed the last boss in Heroic and never set foot in Normal.

I was invited to my first 10-man a few nights ago and I was dinging achievements everywhere... the guildies were aghast that I'd never been in a 10-man Ulduar ever. =D

We've downed General Vezax on 25-man, but didn't get to Yogg-Saron. One of our mages went on ahead to take a peek though and with Yogg's HUMONGOUS aggro radius, actually pulled. In a few minutes, we all went insane. LOLOL XD There's an anti-dicking-around timer. If you don't start fighting properly within a few minutes, everybody gets Mind Controlled and ROFLstomps each other.

I'm middle to low on the damage meters and I'm trying to figure out what's wrong. My personal Damage Per Second is increasing a little, but my damage rank in the same fight among the other 24 people is decreasing.

I was reading some online discussions and other similarly geared Enh Shammies worldwide seem to be able to do about double the damage that I am. I'm suspecting that I have gear equipped that's not actually an upgrade for me, even though they seem to have better stats. It has to do with the combination of stats I have. Anyway, I've stopped disenchanting old gear now until I use new gear for a good long time to watch my performance in the new piece.

I'm sometimes surprised that I'm still being invited to raids actually. I had understood that I was always just filler DPS because they didn't have enough people. We did a guild merger and recruited more people so we're usually not lacking in people to form the 25-mans every week. *shrug* I just show up on time, keep quiet, do what I'm supposed to, try to learn the fights, learn what gear is an upgrade for me, roll when I'm supposed to, and generally try not to fail.

There have been times when I thought, well screw it, if they stop asking me to go because they think I'm stupid, that's fine with me. But last night, I was given gear even though I didn't win the roll for it. They told the guy who won the roll that I show up consistently every raid night and he doesn't, so they gave it to me. =)

I started a leveling a Hunter (The Huntard). For a subset of the animals roaming around the in-game world, you can tame them as a combat pet. They will fight alongside you and respond to your commands, being fed, being healed and use abilities you choose for them.

At first I just wanted to play with the animals. Then I read about some rare animals in certain places and at certain levels. It became highly motivating to get to that certain level to find and tame that certain animal for a pet. =D

But you can only have up to 5 pets at a time. 4 in the stable and one running around with you. I've had to say good-bye to many. =( I've changed the name now, but my huntard's original name was "Sybrine" and I named my first battle-kitty "Giffon". I got some in-game whispers that "zomgdatSOcoolmang". =D But no, I have not read any Nick Bantock bestsellers. I think I should though, it sounds interesting =)

My first real taming challenge was the Ghost Sabre in Dark Shore. The draw is that he's always ghosty and translucent, even when he's not stealthed =)

It's deep in enemy territory, but not a bustling quest area. But that aside, his appearance is a rare occurrence, so you have to persist for a while at it. The folklore around it is that he's a white sabre spirit and sometimes, when you pick up little cat figurines in the area, there is a small chance that it will disturb the spirit which will attack you. When he finally appears, you have to be lucky enough to not die while he's swiping and clawing at you before you finally finish the taming.

The other challenge was Uhk'loc, the blue-skinned gorilla in northern Un'goro Crater. He has a knock-back attack which interrupts the taming spell. So, not only is he biting and punching you, he also throws you back a few feet. You'll end up dying before you finish the taming in time. I did it on my first try with my back to the cave wall and a double Freeze Trap. =)

The Huntard is such a princess. She's provided with all the money, buff food and all the help with mats and resources from the Shammy. =D And now I'm farming for 6800g for her flying lessons plus whatever her epic flying mount costs.

I can't wait until she's lvl 80 so she can do her own damned dailies and make her own damned money. =D

I've also minimally tried some of the other classes. The Warrior Girl and Death Knight Girl are somehow not as much fun for me and the Priest Girl is HARD at lower levels =P



weather: sunny
outside: 12.4°C
mood: ...
Bumble-bees in the distance.

The drowsy hum of bumble-bees in the summer heat grows louder and lower in pitch, until you realize it's actually stock cars on about the hundred fiftieth lap around, smelling like hot dogs and Sunoco 260GTX at the same time.

One blue and white one stands out in the herd of cars all moving together. Or, at least, it would be blue and white if it weren't for the patchwork of logos in a cacophony of colours all over it.

The driver is not alone. In fact, the driver is undergoing heart transplant surgery.


Heart stopped and chest open.

By a team of surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses and assistants of all sorts. Half of which are performing their duties via web-cam and robotic arms manipulated remotely.

That's about the closest analogy to my work right now. And it's not much of an exaggeration.


Baby and Kid Pictures

weather: rain
outside: 1.5°C
mood: amused
Hope everyone had a great New Year!

I generally don't post pictures of people online without their permission. The only exception I'll make is with pictures from the distant past that are reasonably unrecognizable. =)

I've gathered up some baby pics of the userinfoHusband Guy and me. It's cool to look back sometimes at the way we were. =D

Baby Picture Gallery

Enjoy =)


Of Mouses and Men

weather: rain
outside: 6.5°C
mood: amused
This has been on my mind for a while.

If you're talking about the rodent, the plural is "mice". However, if you're talking about a computer input device, the plural is "mouses".

Poll #1312055 Mice vs. Mouses

What is your reaction to this statement?

Huh. I didn't know that!
I knew that, but I don't say it because no one else does.
I know and say that.
I correct everyone who gets it wrong. [Whatever "wrong" means to you.]
They always look at me like I'm from another planet.
I don't really care, I'm just here for the tickybubbles and tickyboxes.
I know the whole story behind this "mice vs. mouses" thing and will tell you in the comments because I know you'd be interested. =)
Other. I'll comment.



Salary Negotiations

weather: light drizzle
outside: 10.6°C
mood: pensive
They key to getting the salary you want is to make sure you deserve it first.

I've never negotiated for my salary in my life, so maybe I don't know what I'm talking about. I've always been given what I wanted, and frequently have been given more than I thought I could get. Sometimes a lot more. And not always at designated salary review times.



weather: cloudy
outside: 14.5°C
I went on my first Karazhan raid with guildies. =) I'm trying to gear up because I'm so hobo... 70 and still in greens. Yeah. =\ And I've barely done any group instances. I've done a few 5's, but I had never seen any of the larger raids.

I'm most proud of the fact that I FOUND Karazhan successfully and didn't wipe just getting there. XD

Well, as far as Proud Moments go, it's a toss-up between that and NOT causing the group to wipe while inside... even during that ___N_O___M_O_V_I_N_G___O_R___W_E___A_L_L___D_I_E___!_!_!___ part. Although, I did run through the crowd once while emitting sparkly splash damage =P

Because I'm the Guild Hobo™, I got some REALLY nice purple loots... really nice for me so far. I also kept getting other loot for my Healing set. I started feeling bad because they gave me stuff even when I said "Pass".

It's funny, just before the raid started, I got two Shadow Resistance pieces. They were rewards from my dailies. I couldn't use them even though they were really good because I just can't use that type of armour. So, I put them into the Guild bank. I guess what they say about the Threefold Law is true. *smile*

Other notes:

  • I remembered to watch my threat bar and stay under the tank.
  • I remembered my assigned totems ... most of the time.
  • I avoided hurty black circles and Thingy-bane's AOE.
  • The only times I died was when I forgot about running to the little notch when Prince WhatsHisAss enfeebled me.

The Husband came home halfway through the Thingy-bane fight. He was huffing mad at me because he had called home and I didn't pick up. But when he saw me in Karazhan with the guildies, his anger melted away into verklemptitude. =D

Anyway, I have a lot more to work towards. I'm still wearing a lot of things that are too crappy to contribute to any other raid instances.


Nail Art Experiments

weather: partly cloudy
outside: 15.3°C
mood: ...
Special occasions deserve well-thought-outtedness, well-practicedness and well-executedness. And you don't get that by doing things for the first time on the day of.

I need something beautiful, elegant and different enough to be Me™. At the same time, it needs to be understated enough for me =) I've seen some seriously over-the-top designs that are way overloaded with jewels and other 3D fauna, flora and patterns. Needless to say, those are just Not Me™.

I've been completely converted to square nails now. I used to dislike square nails. But now that I've had rounded square-ish nails for a while, oval nails look scary and evil to me. I also didn't like French nails for a long time. I'm all about the variations on the French theme now.

I'm looking at a reverse French design. The first attempt isn't great. I have more things to figure out with it. I'll try this design out again and post more pics of the results.

For now, I want to wear this first try to work next work. I want to see approximately how long it lasts, what it does as the nail grows out, if the jewel stays on, where it starts to fall apart first, etc.

I should try using the classic French nail base. I didn't do that in this first experiment. I don't really want to. I like my natural base colour the way it is, but my distal edge is already showing a little. It will only look more ridiculous as the nail grows out. The base would hide that. I like the Antique Bronze tips though, so unlike the classic French, I have to put the tip colour on over the base.

This means I have to do the base, then leave it overnight, then finish off the job the next day. Aigh... 麻鬼煩... pain in the ass.

I might try a second coat for the tip. I'd rather get an even and consistent first coat on all 10 fingers, but that's really hard. I've never liked the look of two coats of colour though.

Putting on the stone is tricky. I have a special polish-glue tool that's similar to a liquid paper squeeze bottle. It has a fine tip that you squeeze a little bit of polish out of the tip so that you can lay down a bed of polish, then use it to pick up a jewel with. But it takes practice to make it work right. I need to also try using tweezers. I was told that tweezers don't work as well, but intuitively, I think that should work better that the polish-glue tool.

The clear top coat is also not as easy as it looks. In my first try, I didn't load the brush enough on some nails while I painted over the jewel. There's one side of the jewel that's not coated over. It's not that visible, but I know that it's not done well.

I also have problems with bubbles. It's either bubbles or softening and smearing the coat underneath.