Gye Greene's Thoughts

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

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Aussie preservative-free soda pop

Australian company that makes preservative-free soda-pop.


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Tips for defeating writer's block

Some good tips on defeating writers block.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Waterless video urinal

Hm. Clever.


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Good weather, good life

Excellent weather today: very Seattle-like.

It's a bit of a myth that it rains all the time in Seattle: actually, it just **threatens** to rain. Chronically overcast -- but only sometimes eventuating in rain.

That's how it was today: two or three heavy showers, bracketed by lovely, soothing greyness.

On other news, I'm coming back down to earth after having submitted my Ph.D. Dissertation. Not shockingly, other things have come up to fill in my newfound ''free time'': a job application due tomorrow (May 20th), plus trying to make up some hours at work (totally pulled back over the last two months, in favor of Dissertation progress).

And, because I haven't been putting in the hours, we still need to live frugally for the next few weeks, until my earnings get restored. So, no taking my trumpet, violin, and clarinet out for their much-needed tune-ups.

Two big around-the-house projects: building a climbing gym for my daughter (i.e. a triangular thing, about my height, made up of 2'' x 4'' s left over from our house's construction), and making a toolshed/transistional workshop (for storing shovels, the wheelbarrow, etc. -- but also for a bit of woodworking, whilst I get my act together over getting the mega-shed built).

The twin boys have a bit of a cold, but everyone else is well.


Monday, May 18, 2009

My shopping basket

Reveling in the newly-found freedom from the shackles of my Dissertation, I had a bit of a wander today. Went to a local woodworking tools shop, about three neighborhoods away, that's been on my ''To Do'' list for the last three years. Unfortunately, it apparently managed to go out of business in that time, as it's been replaced with some bio-tech business.

So, I stopped by the ''cheap 'n' crummy stuff'' shopping center, which I haven't been by in about a year. Funny the amount of turnover of the shops -- gone out of business, to be replaced by other ones.

My shopping basket probably looks a bit different than most folks'. I bought:

  • a glow-in-the-dark nametag/key ring (I collect GITD things)
  • two cans of spraypaint (for marking-out purposes)
  • yellow raincoat-ish overalls (to keep the thistles from sticking to my pants when I wade through the brush in the further reaches of our back yard)
  • elbow-length welding(?) gloves (probably for costume purposes, rather than for welding)
  • a Fred Astaire DVD
  • a Shirley Temple DVD
  • a black plastic gardening trowel (for one of the kids, when they're older; I want each kid to have her/his own trowel), and
  • a sheet of smiley-face stickers of various colors (for future guitar-decorating)
The whole pile cost me around AU$40 -- which is around US$30. Not bad.


Saturday, May 16, 2009

I'm legit

I am now -- finally! -- legit.

I am freed from stasis: I may now progress.


Friday, May 15, 2009

Mae West was gutsy

According her Wikipedia entry, Mae West

also had many other boyfriends throughout her life. One was boxing champion William Jones, nicknamed Gorilla Jones. When the management at her apartment building discriminated against this African-American boxer and barred his entry, West solved the problem by buying the building.

Excellent. :)


Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Swine flu catchphrase

I heard on the radio that one thing that distinguishes swine flu from ''regular'' flu is the level of contagiousness: with regular flu, one in ten people who are exposed catch it; with swine flu, it's one in three.

But that's tangential to the purpose of this blog entry, which is this: I wish I was a famous person (like Wil Wheaton) who could initial cultural catchphrases, because I have one for swine flu.

When people call in sick for work, they should say, "I can't come in to work today. I gots d' pig."

When it read it, it's not that impressive. But if you say it out loud, it's catchy.

''I gots d' pig.''


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Good surnames

Just tidying up my Dissertation bibliography. Some good surnames:

* Bluestone
* Bottcher (bad if you were a civil engineer)
* Bronfenbrenner
* Buehler (''Buehler...? Buehler...?'')
* Treffers
* Smeenk
* Verhulst
* Roosa
* Elder (good for a senior organizational position)
* Featherman (''The lightest-weight superhero...'')
* Luster (a jeweler?)
* Piquero
* Warr
* Molumphy
* Fishman
* Parcel (a letter carrier)
* Zill
* Hao (a professor of mechanical engineering)
* Saastamoinen (I'll bet you'd have to spell that one several times...)
* Rebellion (if that was your real surname and you were a punk rocker, you'd have to use a stage name because people would think it was too cheesy)
* Ihinger (I just like it; dunno why)
* Siegel (ornithologist)
* Steelman
* Stoneman
* Teachman
* Wojtkiewicz
* Wylie (politician?)
* Yabiku
* Moos (don't know if it's pronounced like the cow sound, or like a moose; either way, pretty great)
* Donker


Sunday, May 10, 2009

Korean hotel toilet t.v.

I think this is the last of my pics from our trip via Korea.

In the hotel room where we stayed for our layover, there was a wall-mounted telephone next to the toilet (see red arrow) -- I guess for if you needed to phone room service for more toilet paper.

There was also a wall-mounted speaker with a volume knob, next to the toilet (red circle, blue arrow). Turns out it pipes in the sound from the t.v. -- like if you want to listen to the news while you shave.

Bonus: when sitting on the toilet (which I'm doing in the second pic), you can see the reflection of the t.v. in the bathroom mirror.

So, you **could** sit on the toilet and watch t.v. If you wanted.


Saturday, May 09, 2009

Sleep is good

Stayed up 'til about 6am Saturday morning, getting my near-final draft of my Dissertation off to my committee: the aim was to get it to my Chair by around noon on Friday, their time; was actually around 2pm, but that works.

Slept for maybe a half hour, before having to round up the kids for the Saturday morning swim classes and grocery shop. Zombie boy; fatigued, decrepit.

Got home, and slept from about 2pm-6pm. **Much** better.

Catching up on some of my long-neglected online comics. Then, to bed at a reasonable time -- like, before midnight.

**Could've** done some addt'l tidying of my Dissertation. But, need to play hooky for at least one evening.



Friday, May 08, 2009

Ghouly school

Received an e-mail today, reporting the results of the latest Sociology Dept. faculty meeting.

Among other thngs, "The faculty also voted to restrict the new Graduate School Policy that allows affiliates of the department to serve as solo chairs on dissertation committees. It was noted that some people listed as affiliates are no longer close to the department and faculty members were not sure if they were all actually living either. Exceptions can be made with approval."

Implication: Petitions for zombie Dissertation Chairs!!!


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Thursday, May 07, 2009

A good reason

Ran some errands today, w/ all three kids. The Girl had the right leg of her jeans rolled up to under her knee, all day.

When I asked her why, she said, matter-of-factly, ''Because I like it.''

I approve of that answer. :)


Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Mystery sister

I'm the eldest child of three -- but I used to be the oldest of four. My younger sister (I still have one left) died when she was in her early twenties. This ''mystery sister'' doesn't come up much -- but when it does, I'm sometimes unsure how to handle it.

I mention this because over the weekend, my daughter (4 y.o.) and I were out buying a bracelet for my wife, for Mother's Day. In the glass case at the cash register counter was a tray of body jewelry, including some tongue barbells. My daughter asked what they were.

I told her that just like Mommy has holes in her ears so she can wear earrings, some people poke holes in their tongue so they can wear these things, as decoration. (I'm pretty sure I also mentioned that it hurts, and that it makes you talk funny for a few months: don't want her running home and trying to poke a hole in her tongue!!!)

Then I mentioned that my sister had one of them. I didn't specify that it was a never-mentioned sister -- and she didn't ask -- so she probably just assumed it was Aunt K.

So far I haven't mentioned the Mystery Sister to my daughter, because I want to wait 'til she's a bit older before we have the whole ''death'' discussion. Plus, she's only recently understood the concept of aunts and uncles being the sisters and brothers of Mommy and Daddy. And I'm too superstitious to expand on that point.

Anyhow, kinda weird: my kid doesn't know that she has a permanently un-met aunt. Kind of a Cool Aunt, I suppose -- tongue stud and flight jacket and Goth boots and all that. All of which I have in the back right corner of my closet, just waiting.


Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Not a fairy

The dog was barking a lot this evening, and The Girl -- emulating The Lady -- told him, "Ralphie -- if you keep barking, you'll be sent outside!"

I asked The Girl, "Instead of sending him outside, why don't you just turn him into a frog."

"I don't know how," she said.