Gye Greene's Thoughts

Gye Greene's Thoughts (w/ apologies to The Smithereens and their similarly-titled album!)

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Which superhero I am

Via a recent post from Wil Wheaton's blog, I took the self-diagnostic test on ''which superhero are you?'' Asks you a bunch of personality things.

Not surprisingly, a do-gooder like myself scored most highly as Superman. ;)

Your results:
You are Superman

Wonder Woman
The Flash
Iron Man
Green Lantern
You are mild-mannered, good,
strong and you love to help others.

Click here to take the "Which Superhero are you?" quiz...

And, if some tragic accident happened which turned me over to the dark side, I would be most likely to become Doctor Doom. However, the match isn't nearly as strong -- which hopefully suggests that I won't be succumbing to the dark side any time soon.

Your results:
You are Dr. Doom

Dr. Doom
Poison Ivy
Dark Phoenix
Green Goblin
The Joker
Mr. Freeze
Lex Luthor
Blessed with smarts and power but burdened by vanity.

Click here to take the Super Villain Personality Test


Thursday, December 21, 2006

Amusing statistical term

I love the name for this type of multinomial regression that I stumbled across: ''Seemingly Unrelated Regression.''

Basically, if you're doing lots of runs on variables taken from one data set (even if you're using different dependent variables) they'll possibly share error -- because you're re-using the same variables. This is (apparently) a way of modeling this.

What a great name.


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Interesting family history

Yesterday, received a CD-ROM from my uncle who has been doing a lot of family history/family tree stuff. All about the Norwegian side of the family: my paternal grandmother, and her parents and sibs and forebearers. Word processing documents with family trees, medical histories, how my great-grandparents individually left Norway in their young twenties, then met each other in Minnesota, moved to Montana to homestead [photo to left], then to Everett, Washington. Lots and lots of photos, both ancient and recent.

Was reminded that my cousin's (Guitar Cousin's younger brother) birthday is two days before mine; somehow I'd forgotten that.

Photo of my grandma and her sibs, when my grandma was around twelve. [Photo at left.]I can **totally** tell it's my grandma, by her facial expression.

Learned that my great-grandmother had eight kids -- basically having a kid every 1.5 to 2.5 years, from when she was 22 to when she was 40. And that the youngest daughter died of pneumonia when she was six -- when my Grandma was fourteen. I wonder how that affected her. She's always had a streak of being worried that something bad had happened to someone, if (for example) they were running late for a family gathering. Since my younger sister died, I've had the same sort of thing: a sense of everyone's mortality. So, maybe that's where my grandma got it.

Saw a photo [pictured] of my great-grandmother, taken the year before she died. Totally looks familiar, like she ''should'' look (I was five or six when she died, and as the oldest among my siblings and cousins, I'm the only one that has any sort of direct memory of her). By an interesting coincidence, the photo was printed a year ago, on my birthday.

Saw a photo of an ancient ancestor, 1798-1892; lived 94 years -- not bad! (Esp. prior to modern medicine.)

And, saw this photo, of my great-grandfather, taken in 1923. I like it because it parallels my life so much: in this photo, he's about 36 years old (I'm 37), and he's holding his four year old daughter (mine's two-and-a-half). Apparently, he was a really nice guy. And he was a finishing carpenter, which I find particularly neat, since I've been getting in to woodworking and traditional woodworking tools over the last few years. Unfortunately, the bulk of his carpenter's tools went down a branch of the family that didn't take good care of things, so they're long gone. My dad and grandpa have a few odds and ends, though; and IIRC, my brother got his jointer plane.

Anyhow: good stuff.


Friday, December 15, 2006

Longer waiting for house

So, The Lady was filling out a form to get some sort of ''first home-buyers'' rebate from the government. One of the blanks asked for the expected completion date of the house, so she called the site supervisor.

We already knew that the building industry basically shuts down for the holidays, from mid-Dec. to early/mid-January -- good unions, I suppose. What we hadn't thought of, until the site supervisor pointed it out, is that the shipping and supplies folks **also** shut down for that period. So, even when the workers are back and ready to go, there's often a delay as the ''supply lines'' from the various manufacturers start back up.

So: End of March, probably.

Hm. That's a bit longer than we were hoping for. On the other hand, it probably matches up better with my Dissertation completion date. It'll be good to not be feeling guilty about ''not working on my Dissertation'', as we spend a week moving our stuff into the new house.

One way or another, these things tend to work out. Work out in a beneficial way, that is.


Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The kid's ethnic background

A few days ago, I calculated out The Girl's ethnic background, with the help of The Lady, her mom, and her brother.

The Lady's mum is equal parts French, Germish, English, and Scottish.

The Lady's dad is full English -- although his mom had a Germish maiden name, so it could be that he's 1/4 Germish; not substantiated.

And I'm half Japanese, a quarter Norwegian, and a quarter Swedish. (note: All grandparents born in the U.S.; all great-grandparents immigrated in their early 20s.)

Therefore, in descending order, The Girl is:

5/16 English (or maybe 1/4)
1/4 Japanese
1/8 Norwegian
1/8 Swedish
1/16 Germish (or maybe 1/8)
1/16 French
1/16 Scottish

...and, there ya have it! ;)

Sorting by continent or region, we have 3/8 Great Britain, 1/4 Asian, 1/4 Scandinavian, and 1/8 Western European.

(Culturally, she's Australian, with strong U.S. influences, and peculiar bits of Jp. and Norsk.)


Sunday, December 10, 2006

A very baby day

Today, we went and visited a couple we're friends with at the Mother's Hospital: they had their first kid (a boy) yesterday afternoon (Dec. 9th). And, upon checking e-mail this evening, I discovered that my brother and his wife had their second kid (a girl) on Dec. 9th as well.

A very baby day, indeed!

One day off from my sister's birthday: close, but no cigar. Would've been nifty to have my nephew's birthday the same as his aunt's.


Friday, December 08, 2006

Opportunity to teach (and earn $$$)

Just received an e-mail from The Lady's department, asking me if I'm willing to teach the undergraduate, and the graduate-level, ''Advanced Criminological Theory'' courses for Semester 1, 2007. (Because we're in the other hemisphere, 1st semester runs from Feb. 26th to June 23rd; ''Christmas vacation'' is thus also ''summer vacation''; I'm **still** not completely used to this!)

I haven't taught these specific courses before -- although it **is** within my area of knowledge/interest -- so there'll be a fair bit of running around, working up the weekly topics, gathering up readings, and maybe choosing a textbook (although I tend towards using the original readings, and fill in the gaps and background in lecture). Should be fun, though! And, the extra money will be nice.

Dissertation progress -- not surprisingly -- is lagging behind what I had hoped. End of Dec. is unlikely; more likely end of January, maybe sometime in Feb. But, the timing works out well: some half-time work (the above-mentioned two classes to teach) while I'm finishing things off; then, some more permanent, full-time employment opportunities will present themselves.

As I've mentioned before, we live in a capitol city, so there's three universities with Criminology programs, plus lots of government agencies. So, once I get my Ph.D., **something** will turn up.

Or, I could just go work at a record store -- which I probably what I should've done as a summer job during college. Ah well. ;)


Thursday, December 07, 2006

Progress on Grandpa's crates

As I'd mentioned several blog entries back (late August; can't be bothered to go track it down and post a link), when my Grandpa was selling his house and moving into an assisted-living type place, I crated up four or five -- well, crates -- and shipped them to myself in Brisbane. All of it sentimental; probably half of it is either tools, or wooden stuff my Grandpa built; the rest is a sofa, a large chair, some minor kitchen stuff (1950s-1960s), and -- well, I don't rightly recall.

Anyhow, it's due to arrive in Sydney around Dec. 17th. Then it'll sit there for... a while... while the Customs and Quarantine folks look through it, spray it, and let the critters expire. Then it'll be sent up to Brisbane by train.

So: It looks like the timing might work out, after all. The crates might arrive right about the time that the house is ready to be moved in to.


Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Scrounged some treasures

After dropping off The Kid at daycare this morning, I took a different path home. Aha! The garbage folks haven't cleaned up this street yet.

Made many stops. Almost picked up a wooden stool, but the top turned out to be broken in half. **Could** have brought it home and swapped out the top, but I'm not into stools enough to prioritize that.

Found a whole pile of PCs. Another guy stopped soon after I did, and we both agreed that they were pretty stripped, already. But, salvaged a small fan, for a future ''soldering box'' (to draw the soldering fumes away), and a large in size -- but probably not in capacity -- an ancient hard drive.

Also took two small wooden shelves/dispensers: looks like they're for holding three stacks of hockey pucks or shoeshine polish tins, or some such; three columns, with a wide vertical slot along the front, possibly for viewing the labels in the stack. Bonus points for being actual wood, not plywood or chipboard/particle board.

Also, a lawn-edging tool: long handle, rubber wheel with an attached metal disk that shares the same axle.



Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Too late for treasures

As I might have mentioned, it's the time of year for people in our area to set their unwanted ''large junk'' -- washing machines, old PCs, sofas, misc. lumber -- out on the curb, and for scavengers like myself to abruptly pull the car over and look through the piles.

Unfortunately, I've been busy with other stuff (and, really, we **are** gonna be moving house in a few months...), so I haven't been on top of this like I normally would hope to.

Yesterday and today, went in to Uni with The Lady, to do some library work. On our way there I saw an old PC by the side of the road, among one of these piles; I also saw an acoustic guitar case.

But, I didn't follow it up that evening.

And, this morning on the way to Uni: Gar!!! The garbage truck was making its rounds; picked up all the stuff along that street. Dagnabit.

Was it just a guitar case? Was there a guitar in it? I'll never know.

Ah well. There's still next year. ;)