This day I gave blood, practiced my mandolin, wrote 512 words on a new section of the book, and got a restaurant meal at Best Quality Sweets & Restaurant which has, as promised the best cheap Indian vegetarian food. Today was black lentils and spinach and taters and this enchanting but somehow disturbing tasting (I don’t know how else to describe it) vegetable medley that was mostly onions. Thank you Paul.

Then I watched Jupiter Ascending, and a noisier bit of incoherent eye candy one rarely gets to see.  Ah, the recreation of the couple!

Trying to arrange a Mother’s Day thing for next Monday, we shall see.


I have been fed a pleasant breakfast at White Spot by Jeff; I have finally finally read The Fall of the House of Usher, and much pleased with it was I (Jeff triggered me reading it by declaring yesterday that just smelling coffee brewing made him uncomfortable, so I got up and read the story – and now I’m thinking of reading Poe’s Eureka, seeing as how it’s all over the news); Buster’s cone of shame is off and he’s been for a nice walk around the yard with Jeff in tow; I have heard nice words about the first part of the novel from a friend; Paul took me for a lovely long walk in the Fraser Foreshore Park yesterday as the sun beat down with an intensity truly thrilling for the end of January (and he tried to tease me into a canoe ride on the Fraser, which I lifted my eyebrow and nothing else at) and let me drive thither and hence; I have a plan of attack (finally) for section two that I think will possibly even work this time; I have a plan of what to do when I’m not writing. Much of my anxiety over the last little while has been shed, although I still think we’re going to get an earthquake. Hey, I prepared as well as I can and I know where my go bag is and what my first move will be.  (Making coffee on the barbecue for the rescue workers).

And apart from the deck being more slippery than Stephen Harper’s morals this morning, everything is a-ok. Oh, and Suzette Haden Elgin is dead. Her observations on language and feminism have deeply and crookedly informed my own ideas.

October 4 2004 – 2009 – I feel like I’ve made no progress as a human

youth report
2004-10-04Posted by: allegra

I am pleased to report, that for this Sunday at least, the size of the youth group went up 50%, from two to three.

Katie is talking to Kai on the phone. Matt hasn’t phoned in 5 days and they are discussing how they will abuse him. Fortunately she is just blowing off steam. It’s too bad, really, he seemed like such a nice guy. I said she should wait until he’s explained himself, but she’s justing waiting to see him again so she can dump him.

I’m glad I’m not young anymore.


OOO OOO pr0n for my mom
2005-10-04Posted by: allegra

Go nuts, ma, your Dream Boy is in there someplace…..


Moving right along
2006-10-04Posted by: allegra

I am trying to intuit what Katie’s school fees are this morning; I have emails from the school saying pay up but there’s nothing to indicate what the Viking tax is to keep Katie in school. Yes I know they just declared school fees illegal.

Her boyfriend is trying to pre-emptively break up with her so he can walk away having dumped her. Young love! Katie doesn’t even appear upset about it.

Keith and I watched I Dood It last night. I don’t know what to say about this movie except that it has some of the wildest stuff imaginable in it with interminably long spells of not much happening. The song by the Jimmy Dorsey band and the Eleanor Powell rope dance at the beginning was enough to make my eyes pop out. Anyway, it stars Red Skelton and guests Lena Horne and Butterfly McQueen and the INCOMPARABLE Hazel Scott – her guest bit had my jaw on the floor – what an A MA ZING ivory tickler she was. (Dr. Filk wandered in just before that started and HE was pretty gobsmacked too). Oh, and there’s one piece of physical comedy (Red Skelton trying to get a passed out Eleanor Powell, who appears to be shapely string stuffed into a wedding dress, from the floor to a bed) that was so funny I ran out of air.

If I appear cheerful at the moment, it’s partly because I have a happy secret! I will tell you if you ask me nice, but I can’t post it publicly.


Why would somebody ask for ‘more ranting’?

Tonight I would like to rant about the lack of menstruation rituals in our culture. Tonight I’m going to take the man’s view, as the woman’s view about it isn’t nearly transgressive enough for me ce soir la. Jeez, where’s an accent grave when I need one…
If I was a man, I would want rituals and predictive patterns in young women’s lives that preserved their fertility for their true purpose, namely, making babies with me and not with other men. Having some kind of ceremony where it was drilled into the girl’s head that she had one shot at the childbearing game and if she slept with the wrong guy it was game the fuck over would be useful if my strategy for access to childbearing women meant I was employed and civil. Mind you, if my strategy is to just rape the shit out of her and hope for a lucky plug, it’s still better than if she was really trying to save it for the right guy. Her body may betray her and pop an egg for me. I’d be the ‘wrong guy’ – but I’d still be first. Now, the sperm competition theory of fucking, which holds that guys enjoy sharing girls because if you’re second (or later) you come way harder (your sperm will ‘wash away’ that of your, uh, competitor/buddy), so if you let your buddy go first, because you don’t really care if you get her pregnant, and you’d prefer to come harder because of your wiring, you’ve more or less dropped out of the discussion about breeding. You’ve actually given some consideration to the notion, which is why you’re wearing a condom while all of these shenanigans are going on. I mean, it’s still rape, but there’s a different angle. You get it now? All different styles of thinking about ‘the breeding thing’ lead to different results in terms of how it affects the woman’s life. Oh, sorry, I’ve gone back into the women’s way of thinking about this, ‘scuse me all to hell.

So mOm, did I make you laugh really hard on the phone tonight, or what?

Back to the subject at hand. Women should have menstruation rites so that they actually have two whole chunks of time to think about fertility without having to do any work. That is, in part, what rituals are all about. It’s about the whole “stop working and start thinking” thing that has made humanity what it is. Having enough excess capacity in your life to be able to stop and think is what makes for civil life. Having the spare time to develop morality makes morality. Leisure, in short, makes ethical life possible. But don’t worry, in the end it’s all about sex. Yeehaw. Hurry hurry love.
Did I ever say why it was I refer to my mother as mOm? It’s because when I spell her title that way, it is the “Kilroy was here” or “Clem” sign. See his hands, on either side of his head? Te he. But I also do it because of where I got the idea of it, pOp – which is a clown face with a big nose in the middle. Squint and you’ll see.

October 4 2008 – no post

Nepalese food, a change in venue, a beautiful sunset – Oct 4 2009

I got off the plane and went straight to Jan and Soon’s.  Jan blinked at me and said, “Weren’t you supposed to phone me?”


I had forgotten how beautiful the underlit sunsets are in this town.

Anyway, life in her household was sufficient for a cuppa, but not really for crash space, as she had hella work to do (I still hung out and we flapped our ears for a couple of hours and she had lots of news, good bad and odd).

So I called Catherine, and we had a very pleasant evening catching up (oooo, gossip about exes, I loves me some of that!) and eating at the Mt. Everest which has berloody awesome food and I had my first Kingfisher in ages.  Then we came back here and shot some more s*(t and then I crashed.  The wireless here works very nicely.  At some point I’m going to ask Catherine for another drum solo.  She has a really intense Chinese cymbal that sounds like part of the soundtrack for The Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires.

While ScaryClown was sending me a link to This I was showing Colin a picture of him stretched out on HP Lovecraft’s cenotaph.

Ain’t the internet grand?



a quick wander ’round the web

My morning starts with the following sites:

From which we get a timelapse video of an airport.

From which I learn very little, but once in a while there’s something I follow up on.

I find some of the best stuff I repost there

A brain expansion device.  Almost all the technical ideas for my novel, including that George’s skin is made of a sandwich of carbene and two other materials which we don’t currently understand, except one of them seems to be a nested molecular spring assembly.

Hey, I just this week reconnected with the glorious Janet, who saved my ass, Paul’s ass, and the ass of the children MANY times when we were living in Montréal.  It’s one thing facebook is very good for, and if I could talk my mother into joining she’d never get any ****ing family history done she would be so busy reconnecting with rellies.

John  came home one time from Value Village with a Fark tshirt for me.  Long term fans of this blog will recollect I actually met Drew at a Vancouver Fark Party (Keith in tow).  I love him, as an idea and as a person.  ALSO, IT WAS THE ONE SPORTS BAR IN VANCOUVER I EVER WENT TO WHERE THE  ASPECT RATIO WAS SET CORRECTLY ON **EVERY**SINGLE**TV**  So really it was a lot like getting struck by lightning, while drinking with a crowd of new friends.

Cause I like gossip, yo.

Where I get my sf media fix.

The snarkiest and most hypocritical site on the net, viz feminism.  Really is better, but I keep getting lost in the comments thread.

Good info and hucksterism jostling for clickspace

Most of the filkers I know are on it.

Local news which I grab and repost for local peeps on facebook

ERMA GERD.  So much links, so much clickyness

I’ve been following them since they were a little breathless puppy of a newssite

Nicer than 4chan, worse than cleaning out a pedophile’s garage.  A black hole for time, energy and the will to live.

Most of the time I don’t understand the links, but it’s educational when I do

Self-indulgent and unclear as to its audience, but I find original reporting in there which makes it worth it.

How terse can I be?  It’s a puzzle

and I often make sidetrips to

Very happy to see PZ Myers has unequivocally opposed Richard Dawkins on his fiat statement on the abortability of genetically non-normative fetuses. To posit that the correct moral stance is to abort the fetus is yet another vomit stain on Dawkins’ fratbro drunkard’s walk through the pubcrawl of contemporary ethics. OH LOOK DOGE PRETTY PICKCHURS – a site started by Lorraine Murphy, a local journo and online buddy.




2012 in review

Love each other while you can. If you can’t manage that, move back far enough so that you aren’t hurting yourself or other people.

The road to failure is lack of effort on a day to day basis, so figure out how much effort is required to keep some momentum, and then you’ll have success to look forward to. Don’t let a day go by without working towards a goal.  Or a goat, if you’re dyslexic.

Honesty is the best policy with yourself; it varies in usefulness as a policy with other people.

Heroes feel terrible the next day.  After the daring rescue, the paperwork.

Irony is a lousy trade for compassion.

The first person to a location usually leaves trash.  This is just as true on the internet as it is in a national park.

Aging gracefully is one third helping others, one third suiting yourself, and one third keeping your mouth shut.

If there is a worse event than the loss of a child or grandchild, I don’t want to experience that either.  I hope anybody who suffers the loss of a child comes to terms with their grief.

My life got better when I stopped believing I had a perfect memory.  Blogging / journal keeping helped.

When I think of the millions of people who grew up without the love and support of a family like mine, I’m filled with gratitude to my parents as well as the people who didn’t have those advantages and still didn’t turn out like jerks.

Asking why there are scumbags is like asking why there are mosquitoes.  They are part of the human ecosystem.  That said, don’t leave the things that attract scumbags into your life lying around your psychic yard.

retail therapy

I was having a crappy day. Then I thought, you know….. and I called and left a message for Ian and Lucile and my former mother in law; I spoke to Lois and Terry and Jan and my mostest favorite writing partner Dave, and I left a message for my oldest friend (46 years and counting) Bonnie. Then I went out and bought hair dye (as suggested by a friend to help with the job hunt, since yes I am facing age related discrimination, thanks for asking, and thank you Garnier Hair Colour Number 60 for a) still being available and b) being on deep discount so got TWO ya!) Then I bought long beans and garlic and I’m going to make a massive stir fry for dinner. Then I bought a new laptop because screw it I’m leaving Apple and going back to Windows and Simply Accounting for two seats (re church) and some resume software and got free antivirus. Having called many friends and having had a lovely chat and having taken action instead of sitting in my house and being a mook, the sun has come out. So there.

Worth stealing wholesale from

A letter from Sydney Smith to Lady Georgiana Morpeth (right), Feb. 16, 1820:

Dear Lady Georgiana, — Nobody has suffered more from low spirits than I have done — so I feel for you.

1st. Live as well as you dare.

2nd. Go into the shower-bath with a small quantity of water at a temperature low enough to give you a slight sensation of cold, 75° or 80°.

3rd. Amusing books.

4th. Short views of human life — not further than dinner or tea.

5th. Be as busy as you can.

6th. See as much as you can of those friends who respect and like you.

7th. And of those acquaintances who amuse you.

8th. Make no secret of low spirits to your friends, but talk of them freely — they are always worse for dignified concealment.

9th. Attend to the effects tea and coffee produce upon you.

10th. Compare your lot with that of other people.

11th. Don’t expect too much from human life — a sorry business at the best.

12th. Avoid poetry, dramatic representations (except comedy), music, serious novels, melancholy, sentimental people, and everything likely to excite feeling or emotion, not ending in active benevolence.

13th. Do good, and endeavour to please everybody of every degree.

14th. Be as much as you can in the open air without fatigue.

15th. Make the room where you commonly sit, gay and pleasant.

16th. Struggle by little and little against idleness.

17th. Don’t be too severe upon yourself, or underrate yourself, but do yourself justice.

18th. Keep good blazing fires.

19th. Be firm and constant in the exercise of rational religion.

20th. Believe me, dear Lady Georgiana,

Very truly yours,

Sydney Smith

Good news ever-e-body

The thousand sided dice will be on line sometime today or tomorrow. As my brother and I did the data review we removed some prefixes and suffixes and added some.  In the quarter century since the project was inaugurated, the biggest reason words got removed was for reasons of pc.  For example, one of the words that got removed was voodoo.  Voudun is a global religion even if it is centered on the Caribbean, and I can’t hack using religious slurs as part of the project.  That thought ___did not occur___ when I entered the word in the first rounds of data entry.  Other words came out because they were gendered slurs, or because the word use had shifted enough to give both me and Jeff the squick.  Jeff deferred to me in the removals, although we had some DANDY discussions on a variety of subjects. He ran tech and entry, I ran the simulsearch.  I think we took out less than ten on both sides, so I guess out of two thousand I was doing okay.  It stuns me how much English has changed in the last 25 years.  A project like this really brings it home. is the link, no it’s not up yet.  ‘citing times!  Big hugs to Jeff for all the coding!  I may have had the idea, but it would be air without him.  PS the original code from the dawn of time with the data files is available, but you don’t want it; as an artefact of processing speed improvements it screeches when you roll the dice.  Like a haruspex.  AiiiEEEE!

The little list

I made a list of things that make me happy about 5 years ago (probably before I blew out my back), and it’s really interesting to see how things changed.

Foreign films.  Still true.

Wreck Beach.  Still true; but I don’t go as much.

Roller skating.  I haven’t done that in ages, and given that my balance is not good, I think that’s done.  I still have ice skates but gosh, I’ve put on enough weight to make them a bad fit.

Writing songs.  Now folks, what do YOU think?  SVQ.  Still my favourite activity by far.  And so cheap! And so close! And so filled with inertnesting surprises!

Baking pies.  I don’t think I’ve made more than one pie since I started living with Jeff.  That, I hasten to add, is not his problem/fault/responsibility.  Mmmm, pie. Too hot to bake right now.

Going to a spa.  Oh, yeah.  In fact, I think I may book something soon.

Cooking a large meal for a houseful of friends.  Still true.

Throwing a party.  Still true.

Walking.  enh, not so much.  I have to get going on this and just make a walk part of my morning routine, rain or shine.

Watching bugs.  I can still do this for hours.  I prefer that they not be silverfish under my bed though.  I just cleaned under my bed, laid down some silverfish poison, and found twenty bucks.  Even my fucking room is expressing an opinion on the subject of how stytastic it is.

Listening to live music.  And you would guess….?

Home-making presents.  Still doing that.

Watching fireworks.  Well, the Vancouver crowds suck unholy mops, but yes.

Walking downtown on a Saturday night.  I love people watching.  Early in the evening, before the drunks get violent.

Getting a massage.  Sadly, I have to pay for these now.  I can winkle a few minutes out of the kids, but sigh.

Driving through terrain.  I love highway driving in BC.

Seeing unusual animals – pets, IRL, zoos, TV shows – I loves me weird critters.  Current favourite is velvet worms.

Travelling alone.  I hate it; I prefer to do it alone.  And sometimes being by myself at 30000 feet is okay; that’s the part of the trip that doesn’t freak me out.

Eating lobster.  Yes.  This.

Having sex.  Haw, haw, haw.  I’m celibate now – have been for a year – and I can cross this safely off my list of things to enjoy.  This aphorism deleted.  And nobody wants to hear details either way so, bully for me.

Going to the ballet.  Haven’t done that in ages.  The last opera was ruined by the perfume (Fuck Entitled White Women and their TRAIL OF TEAR GAS).  But I could definitely handle some dancing soon.

What wasn’t on the list – drinking beer. Surfing the internet or watching ER for 6 hours at a time.  Hugging my kids.  Hearing a friend’s voice on the phone.  Going to church.

a little bit of ever’ting

It was a solstice party (1 pagan in attendance, check), a housefilk (whenever two or more of you are gathered together in the name of the typo, amen), a hootenanny (small children running around and massacring harmonicas and tambourines while Tapioca is cooked), a religious/cultural interpersonal therapy session as we sang the hums of our people (Falling Free, Frobisher Bay among others), an impromptu poly gathering (6 people in attendance openly poly, plus lurkers), a-a-a-and a shameless attempt on my part to get everybody to compliment me on my sheer good sense for buying Otto.  Who is a boy, Katie K confirmed it.  She also arrived with a housemate in tow and La Merveilleuse Tillie‘s fraking awesome rosemary infused vodka/vermouth libation, which despite the no drinking rule I tasted cause I had to.  And I ain’t sad to.  I’m glad to.  Still a taste left, if ScaryClown comes over tomorrow I’ll feed him some.  Stayed away from the beer, but Mike left 3 in the fridge, so at least I haz some to offer guests. Day before yesterday I made biscotti, and then shared them out liberally at the party, sending some home with the LET’S SING SONGS ABOUT DEATH (literally her first words when she unpacked the bass) Peggy  and the ever useful and opinionated Tom. Also dispensed biscotti to Mike, who sang The Weight (ah, the piercing harmonies!) and Tomorrow Wendy,  and to Rozo, who spectated with that sleepy and mischievous smile I’ve gotten so fond of.  The glorious and unabridgedly awesome Cindy added that special soupçon of harmonious madness without which no housefilk can be characterized as ‘good’.  Or is housefilk like sex and pizza?  ah, erm.  Anyway, we sang zombie songs (dead people), Frobisher Bay (freezing to death), Tomorrow Wendy (which has lots of death in it), Dead Flowers (roses on your grave), and really really kept the theme of somgs about death on track more or less by accident.  Paul sang Last Page and Cindy sang Runtime Error, Type Mismatch so Lady Miss B was there toooooo. Although regrettably not in person, possibly because I neglected to invite her?  Duh.

I cleaned my house and wrote a song yesterday, and people came over and we laughed and chatted and sang and played.  Success!  My brother has been feeling meh but not enough to crimp fun (he slept in the guest room, but Eddie the wonderkitty kept him company).

Due to overwhelming popular demand (two facebutt friends), I will be setting words to my new song, which is the third I’ve written in the Game of Thrones universe.  My Needle and I, and Funeral March of Lord Tywin (instrumental) were the first two.  This one is called The Maid of Tarth.  Oh Otto, you are demanding instrument, but I will rise to the challenge.  And now I realize that it’s 4 GoT songs, I forgot about Sam the Slayer.  When I get into a Universe I seriously fracking commit.

Now…. how do I keep my house clean enough so I actually throw housefilks more than twice a year? I mean apart from a chartreuse flamethrower and a tank of oxygen….