Friday, July 28, 2017

Friday random junk

I need to go to Sherman, but I can't decide whether to go this afternoon or tomorrow. It's supposed to be incredibly hot today again, but it has clouded up, so it's not quite so bad (it's the sun that gets to me more than anything, I think).

So far all I have done today is water the field plots, do 40 minutes of workout (finally, I was able to push myself to do the full amount), and do a little piano practice. I have eaten lunch, so if I went to Sherman I couldn't go to the barbecue restaurant I like. If I don't go today, I should v. shortly go over to my office and do something.

I dunno. I just feel kind of burned out. I know part of this is just the time of year - the very end of July and the start of August always make me sad because it's so hot, I never feel like I did enough (or had enough fun) with my summer, and the fall semester is breathing down my neck. (I mean: I like teaching but the thought of going from being only responsible for one student - my research student, and as I said, she pretty much takes care of herself - to being responsible for 100-some, is exhausting). Also, we've been told that yet again there is a "symposium" that we will have to attend for two days before the start of classes. (I really, really hoped that would retire with the person who thunk it up....) And yeah, that probably means yet another go of the active-shooter training which is unpleasant and....I wouldn't go so far as to say 'traumatizing,' but honestly? I don't like giving brainspace to it because honestly, I think if I shooter made it into my building, there would be mass casualties given how cruddy our doors are for locking and the like. And dangit, using my belt (which I usually am not wearing, as I wear dresses) as an adjunct to hold the door closed is NOT a solution, nor is the thing I took as a hint last year - that the prof should be the sacrificial lamb, in a way, so maybe some of the students survive - is also NOT a solution.

And I don't like sitting through an hour plus long talk about something that I can't really do too much about and that will probably kill me if it happens. I mean, it's not like some forms of cancer where if you exercise regularly and eat a lot of cabbage, you can maybe slightly reduce your risk....

They also hinted we keep something "weapon-adjacent" in our offices, like a golf club or a baseball bat, as a defense in case someone comes to our office upset and.....I just don't know. I probably could get an old softball bat from someone and just keep it in the corner, or, as I've long been tempted to do, order a shillelagh from one of the online sites that carries them, because then I could also use it out in the field. (Except I'd really want two, one to keep under my bed at home, though I'm not sure how effective a shillelagh would be against a home-invader).

(ooh, apparently they make ones with concealed knives? INteresting. I tend towards the pacifistic end of the scale, but if someone's trying to hurt me - or a student who is weaker/less with-it than me - all bets are off.) I'm thinking that might be good to have. Because even though the chance of my ever using it for defense is almost zero, I COULD use it on days when my bursitis is bad and I have to go out in the field. Or I could use it to knock stuff off of high shelves (well, unbreakable stuff)

I may have to look around a little bit. I could actually see keeping one of those on hand whereas a baseball bat in my office seemed vaguely ridiculous. (Other option would be to get a big heavy piece of PVC for a "poster tube" and maybe weight one end? Though that seems like more work).

But yeah. There are things I have to consider in my work that I doubt my dad ever did. (Then again: I remember during the era of the Unabomber, him saying that it was extremely, extremely unlikely, but if a greasy-looking package with an unfamiliar return address (or none at all) showed up at the house, we were to call the cops and not touch it. My dad was a geologist; some of the stuff he covered was petroleum-industry-adjacent so I suppose someone with strong environmental beliefs might have a complaint with him).

But yeah, doesn't help my worries about what I am now thinking of as "the Great Hardening" to contemplate doing CRASE training again. (I am not enough of a snowflake, nor do I have a sufficiently traumatic backstory, to feel like I could opt out).

Honestly, I'd like to opt out of the whole two days but that's not even remotely possible, and apparently some of the presentations are gonna be on new safety rules we must conform to. (Again, I think of my dad's teaching, and how he inherited a mercury-contaminated lab, and how he called Physical Plant to request hazmat cleanup and they kept putting him off until 2 weeks before classes started, and finally he called them back and said, "I am NOT letting students in a lab with mercury in the floor pipe-chases; my lab assistant and I are going to suit up in hazmat suits and invite the local newspaper down to see how mercury is cleaned up correctly" and the hazmat cleanup team was there within an hour... In this day and age, he'd just be told, "Sorry, you can't teach in that lab, in fact, we need to tear down the entire building")


Happier things: I find I am within 10 rows of being done with (most of) the knitting on Hagrid - once I bind off the sleeve, I will block it, and then sew it up, and then the remaining knitting is a small neckband. (And I will have PLENTY of yarn for this - I have two balls I haven't even broken into, and I'm thinking maybe I look in my floss stash for floss to sew this up with, because the yarn I knit it with is so heavy.

I think I AM going to block it before sewing it up, though I have the neck stitches on holders - maybe just dunk it and hold the holders out of the water? I will have to think on it. (Or maybe I steam block this one instead?)


And I didn't do the Pony Cam shots yesterday, so here they are.



Toola Roola.

And something I have now noticed - one of the Pony tumblrs that was heavily into G3, the writer commented about "that G3 smell" and yes, I recognize it now, after acquiring a couple of G3s from different sources (the first one I got, I thought maybe the person had sprayed Febreze or something in its vicinity). They do have a scent - it is not at all unpleasant and isn't even really "plasticky," or what I think of as "plasticky." It's faint, but it's there, and I can imagine how someone who played with G3s as a kid would find the scent a link to their childhood. (Supposedly scents are deeply tied to memories; I know every time I would get a whiff of Prell shampoo, I immediately thought of one of my grandmothers, who used it.)

And I have "Pony-head" up in my blog descriptor now. I came up with that yesterday and I admit I like it - a lot. I never was totally down with the "Brony" concept (and "Pegasister" seems to have mostly died out, and felt at times a little forced to me). The problem with "bronies," is like so much else in our culture, the worst of them are now taken to be representative of the group as a whole (the whole Equestranauts episode of Bob's Burgers was cringey, but....yeah, there's perhaps a germ of truth there). And also, the fact that I'm also interested in the earlier gens means my interest is different. (Well, it always WAS different from what I would consider the more outre of the "bronies").

So Pony-Head it is. Just like some ballerinas apparently called themselves bun-heads, and how a couple of women I knew (I can't remember now if they were Apostolic Christian or Mennonite, but they were in a church where women traditionally wore a small head-covering) referred to themselves as "doily heads," which sounded disrespectful to me but apparently they thought was hilarious.

And also, Pony Head works for me because of this:

Princess Pony Head from Star vs. The Forces of Evil. She's a hilarious character and I kind of love her - if I had more time and energy I'd buy a bunch of turquoise fleece, and bright pink long-pile fake fur, and make a Princess Pony Head pillow. (But getting her snout just right would take some designing, and I wouldn't want a "just flatsy" version of her). (Even better: if I could find trim that was like ball-fringe, but with stars, to represent the stars that "float" out of her neck as she flies around).

Thought for tonight:look in my various stuffed-toy books and see if there's a horse pattern with a snout close enough to that, that I could scale up in size to be a Pony Head. I.....might actually do this. (Though now I am thinking: make the mane out of fleece sewn into the right sort of shape instead of using fur). Am picturing something maybe 2-2 1/2 feet high, so essentially "life sized" based on how she looks next to Star in the cartoon. (And just do a flat round "base" for the bottom where her head is "cut off"

(If I can find a pattern for one of those "hobbyhorse heads" that people used to make to put on broomsticks for their kids....that would be about perfect, provided it had the right shaped snout)

this one might work, especially if I scaled it up just a bit (by cutting the seam allowances bigger and sewing them smaller). I'll have to see when I get home and print the patterns out. There were some other options available, one was super realistic but too complex for what I wanted (and it wasn't a free pattern, but really, the person who designed it deserves to profit because yeah, it was super complex).

I don't know if I'll do her with an open mouth (which would take further pattern modification) or just sew on a smile and those goofy teeth. I'll have to think about it.

1 comment:

purlewe said...

You could put the sts on scrap yarn or floss to dunk your sweater and let it soak. I do that and it is nice to be able to submerge the sweater parts.