Yeah, I need a life.
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The low temp last night was 20°F. That's winter cold, right there. Supposedly the low temp for Tuesday was going to be 40-ish, but that's already over since "Tuesday" started almost seven hours ago and included the time when it was in the 20s. (And in fact it's 26° now.)
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Sunspot #1007 formed and went around the side of the Sun. Now a new sunspot pair is forming, but hasn't shown up yet. This, we are told, is evidence that the solar minimum is "ending".
Is it? If the sunspot formation rate remains very very low--but nonzero--is the actual minimum over?
Regardless of whether the minimum is actually over or not, it remains that it is/was one of the longest minima on record--certainly one of the longest minima since the late 19th century. And since the length of sunspot cycles correlates rather nicely with cooling trends, it's possible that we may be facing some colder winters over the next few years at least.
Time will tell.
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Links to web pages by people with far too much freaking time on their hands:
Endor holocaust. This is white text on black, hard on the eyes; I skimmed it a bit
A detailed rebuttal to the Endor holocaust. I didn't bother.
I strongly suspect that neither of these guys (and you know they have to be guys) has ever even seen female genitalia.
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The first thing you see when you look at Dilbert.com is a banner that says, "download the Dilbert widget and rate each strip" with a picture of Dogbert.
I flatly refuse to waste my time on something stupid like that. A) I don't care what other people think of a particular Dilbert strip, and I don't expect anyone to care what I think either; B) it's not like these ratings are going to make any difference whatsoever in the quality of future strips. There is no benefit to doing so, either for me or anyone else--and in the bargain I get a piece of crapware to clog up my computer.
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The new laptop is lighter than the old one. It's also wider. I took it out for a bit last night to surf a few web pages, and ran it on battery the entire time. Yay me.
The thing boots fast, too. I wish the desktop booted that quickly. I suppose if I were to dig into the software and remove the extraneous bullshit that runs at startup, I could probably save myself some boot time--but I usually just put the thing to sleep, anyway, rather than shut it down. Sleep mode has all the benefits of shutting down without the time-consuming shutdown-and-reboot steps. It's pretty close to "instant on".
So here I sit, arms and legs still aching (though less than last night) and thinking about hitting the hay for a while. Certainly I'm not going to be doing anything strenuous today--not when I stayed home due to muscle aches.
I am still in need of a haircut, though. Maybe tomorrow or Thursday.
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Right now my anime playlist consists of three shows: Aishiteruze Baby, ToLoveRu, and Itazura na Kiss. Having tired of the rerun shows, I stopped watching them (Hayate no Gotoku, Kaze no Stigma, and Bamboo Blade). It's not that the reruns are bad shows; just that I realized I was avoiding watching anime because I didn't want to sit through the reruns--I wanted to watch new stuff. So I dropped the reruns from the playlist.
AB is developing in an interesting direction. I love Kokoro, and I'm wondering WTF is going on between her and Kippei.
I finally figured out WTF is going on with the titles of the fansubs of ToLoveRu. People keep adding "Trouble" into the title, and I finally realized that it's a mistranslation.
Anime series--when their titles are in English--have a Japanese "subtitle" in them. And vice-versa; the title of Lovely Complex is presented in Japanese (as Rabu*Kon) with "Lovely Complex" written underneath in English.
ToLoveRu has Japanese text (hiragana) underneath the roman letter title, and the hiragana spells "ToRabuRu". People have translated this as "trouble".
But what it is, in fact, is the Japanese rendition of the title ToLoveRu. "Rabu" is the Japanese form of the English word "love". So the correct title of ToLoveRu is just that, not "ToLoveRu -Trouble-" as fansubbers have done.
One might make the point that the title is meant to be "Trouble", but then it's redundant to say "ToLoveRu" and then "-Trouble-" afterwards.
If you're going to insist that this is correct, then Lovely Complex has to be Rabu*Con -Lovely Complex- (just to pick an example).
Anyway, the story at least has gotten away from just being an Urusei Yatsura clone, and in fact it's a fun show to watch. Lots of cute girls, plenty of fan service.
Itazura na Kiss is a bit of an angst-fest, but only a bit. It's got too much humor to be super-angsty, and Kotoko is too pleasant of a character for the story to get too serious or weepy. I'm really enjoying it.
I've been watching Yawara! here and there, too. I was dreading watching the episode which was set in 1936 and used the character designs of the regular cast to tell the story of how Jigoro met his wife and fell in love with her. I don't like that episode; it's outside of the regular continuity of the series and I think it's actually not interesting whatsoever--and when I realized that I hadn't watched Y! for a while because that episode was next, I had the liberating thought that I didn't actually have to watch it if I didn't want to...so I skipped it.
It was then right into the "Jody Rockwell" story arc, which is mercifully short since I don't like Jody Rockwell all that much, either. At the beginning of that arc, she's a big clueless gaijin voiced by a native Japanese person with dialogue written by a native Japanese person, so she says things like "Yawara! We fight!" What native English-speaker (Jody is Canadian) talks like that?
Something that's bothered me for a while, now: Yawara is the only cute girl in the entire series. Every other female character looks terrible; even Sayaka--who is supposed to be beautiful--is non-cute. In fact, all the men are drawn "ugly", too, except for Kazamatsuri. (He's a ladies' man, and Jigoro's mispronunciation of his name as "kazamidori"--weather vane--is not inapt.)
Am I wrong? One of the premier athletes of the female judo world in Europe is Belkens, the Belgian--she's a freaking supermodel--judo is her hobby--and yet Yawara is much cuter than she is. (The nose, for one thing....)
Oh well. It's still a good story; and one nice thing about the first set going to ep 40 is that we get to see Yawara's entry into college, which is fun.
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Temperatures across the US, Jan-Oct 2008. Wow. "Global warming"?