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Sun, Dec. 20th, 2009, 11:44 pm
Dollhouse.

Did anyone else notice that as SOON as they cancelled it, it started getting much better?

Review of this week's episodes: FINALLY! It's about goddamn time this turned into a Joss Whedon show.

Thu, Dec. 10th, 2009, 01:06 pm
THIS.



Seriously people. Just stop. Fax is dead. Mourn and move on.

Wed, Dec. 9th, 2009, 11:23 am
Survey time!

How many of you have an Android device?

Wed, Dec. 2nd, 2009, 10:05 am
There is no Tuesday, there is only Zuul.

It's an odd week for me, a week without a Tuesday.

Monday morning, I woke up at 8 AM after a little less than eight hours of sleep. Sounds reasonable, right? That's what I thought. I figured I'd wind up going to bed some time around midnight and keep up the pattern. How wrong I was.

Turns out, I didn't get tired when I expected to. I went to bed, but sleep shunned me, so I pulled out the laptop and kept myself amused for a few hours. When I still wasn't tired, I kept myself amused for a few MORE hours... then dawn came. Then noon. Finally, around 1 PM, I found myself tired enough to go to bed. So my Monday night finally ended at 1 PM Tuesday. I then slept until a little bit after midnight, starting my Wednesday at around 12:20 AM. I hate my body clock and its obnoxious lack of anything resembling a regular cycle.

So, here I am, Wednesdaying it up the day after Monday. I left home before dawn to make a 45-minute trip to a bagel shop in Santa Clara because they have the best lox bagel sandwich I know of. Now I'm trying to work out what to do with the rest of my Wednesday. I will probably go to the comic shop soon and trade old comics for new ones. After that... not really sure, maybe I'll keep reading the docs on how to write apps for Android. <3 my G1 (even though it's kinda obsolete now that there are shinier Android devices out). I will probably replace it next year, subject to having the money to do so and to the availability of a version of the Motorola Sholes (the device marketed by Verizon as the Droid) that is AT&T-friendly (i.e. either sold by AT&T or sold by someone else but capable of using an AT&T SIM card). And hopefully it will be capable of 3G speeds on the AT&T network, unlike my G1 (a limitation of the hardware, not the software). In any case, Android FTW.

Anyway, that's all for now...

Sun, Nov. 22nd, 2009, 01:40 pm
From PostSecret



This PostSecret seemed particularly relevant to me because I've been wondering lately... Why are people so judgmental? And why are people so afraid of being judged for trivial things?

Tue, Nov. 17th, 2009, 06:17 pm

I overslept by eight hours (yes, OVERslept BY eight hours), the bank fucked up my rent check costing me and my roommate a total of $26 for THEIR fuckup, I'm on the verge of running out of money and having to sell investments to make NEXT month's rent, and I got a call from my dad informing me that his skin cancer is more serious than they originally told him.

How the fuck is YOUR day?

Tue, Nov. 10th, 2009, 10:01 am
Okay, seriously people...

Stop making membership web sites that don't have a login form on the homepage. It's just stupid. This isn't 1995 anymore, we're better than this. Don't make me click "Sign In" to get to a login page, just put the damn form in the space you would have wasted on the "Sign In" link.

Wed, Nov. 4th, 2009, 05:34 am
Recent times.

It's been a while since I wrote here. I'm not updating because I have any earth-shattering revelations to impart, but simply to keep in touch.

For whose who saw my previous update (friends-locked on LJ, so it didn't go out to Facebook), my dad is doing fine now. He just has to follow a ridiculously restrictive diet and keep his blood pressure down, and he gets to stay out of the hospital.

As for me, I'm focused on two things right now, seeking a source of income (probably a job) and seeking a romantic relationship. I find both much easier to keep than to find. Momentum FTW, I suppose. Those are the two major things I see as standing between me and how I want my life to be right now. There are some minor things, too, but those are the major ones.

I'm also trying to keep an eye on my weight, which has been threatening to get out of hand lately. Time for more activity and less foodage. I am sad that I was not able to keep off the weight that I lost when I was hospitalized last year, and in fact gained it all back plus 50%. No fair, I literally starved for two and a half weeks for that weight loss (involuntarily, but still).

My mood has been lower at night than in the daytime lately, which I know most people consider normal, but is pretty much the opposite of how my body has always worked in the past. Heat still makes me f'ing miserable, but my body seems to have reversed its position on illumination and accepted the traditional view of "light = good". Of course, my sleep "cycle" still seems to be governed by a particularly capricious random number generator, so that means I'm awake for a lot of dark hours that I need to find positive ways to cope with -- such as tonight, when I woke up at 11 PM. I think this contributes to my weight gain as well -- I'm more inclined to eat unnecessarily and choose worse foods during the dark hours when my mood is low and nobody's around to interact with.

Anyway, I woke up hungry, but didn't want anything I had in the house (most of it is too greasy or acidic, and my stomach refused to entertain the notion), so at 1:20 AM I went on a quest for soup. I walked to 7-Eleven in hopes they might have a can of the kind I wanted (Progresso minestrone) in their limited selection, but (unsurprisingly) they didn't. So I walked to Safeway instead, and arrived home with my prize at about 2:40 AM. Good deal. Lots of walking, time spent away from my stockpiles of unhealthful food during the dark hours when I'm more inclined to give in to them, and in possession of a much better alternative upon my return. Quest completed, somebody give me some experience points.

Anyway, that's some of what I've been up to lately. Not dead, just quiet.

Thu, Oct. 8th, 2009, 10:54 am
My body is being unusually cooperative lately.

Just a bit of an observation. This week, my body has been getting tired at night, waking up in the morning between 6 and 8 AM without an alarm, not telling me I'm hungry when I know damn well there's no reason to be, losing a small amount of weight, and just generally being much more cooperative than it ever has in my life. I don't know why this is, but I most heartily approve and encourage it to continue on this new path of reform.

Mon, Oct. 5th, 2009, 01:49 pm
New post on my web site!

I've updated my blog at http://www.davidsafar.com/.

The new post, "Jobs Are Overrated", is the latest in my series on things that are overrated, which has previously featured "Formal Education Is Overrated" and "Degrees Are Overrated".

Mon, Oct. 5th, 2009, 09:01 am
Still alive.

Just a ping to note that I'm still out here.

Trying to find a way to stay motivated and not let my to-do list fall so far behind. I tried cutting it down, but it's still backing up. Hrm.

I got a call from a recruiter on Friday who's looking for a mid-level QA to become the first QA at a successful start-up in Palo Alto. That might be a good fit for me, as real jobs go. I told him I'd like to proceed with the interview process, so I'm hoping to hear back today about what the next step is.

Had another session of my D&D game last night, session five, I believe. I thought we'd be done in four sessions, but it's stretching out to six, so the PCs are leveling a bit more than I expected -- so adjustments will be made on that front starting with the next adventure.

I have some web design projects I'm working on right now for free, just to get a portfolio together.

My blog had more traffic last month (despite only having one post) than in any previous month. That may be a little misleading, though, as it also counts some traffic from web design projects that I'm hosting test versions of on that site. Eh. Anyway, if I can get a few more posts up this month, I should have even better traffic this time around!

I did my trial run for my entry in this month's episode of the Aluminum Chef cooking competition my friends and I do every month. My $10 pasta dish came out well, and I think it'll come out even better next week when I try to fix the things that I f'd up the first time around. :D

So... that's some stuff that's going on.

Sat, Sep. 26th, 2009, 01:06 pm
Got to bed late.

...and I woke up today miserable for no apparent reason. WTF?

And then the weather GAVE me a reason. F today, that's what to f.

Wed, Sep. 16th, 2009, 08:43 am
New post on my web site!

I've updated my blog at http://www.davidsafar.com/.

The new post, "Degrees Are Overrated", is a direct sequel to the previous post, "Formal Education Is Overrated".

Mon, Sep. 14th, 2009, 05:28 am
Hyper Mind

My mind is hyper tonight. I had an excellent D&D game last night, and when I got home I spent four hours excitedly mathing and coding, exploring an idea one of the Sunday gamers shared about generating random numbers. I wrote some interesting Perl code based on his idea, and didn't really want to stop when I did -- my mind was still racing. I went to bed at 4 AM and tried to sleep, but my mind was too active. I want to learn how to calm my mind when it's too chaotic for meditation. Writing helps, but it takes a long time. Same with decaffeinated tea -- by the time I make it, wait for it to cool, and drink it, I'm not sure if it's the tea that helped or all the time I spent on it. Causation or correlation? It would also be awesome if I could find a way to rev up my mind, interest, and motivation into the state I was in from about midnight till 4 working on my random numbers script. It would help a lot with employment if I could do that at will, I think.

Mentally sharp at will, sleepy at will. It makes me think of the Juicer O.C.C. from the RIFTS RPG.

I got up after a few restless minutes in bed, frustrated with my racing thoughts. I made some Tension Tamer tea and picked up the laptop to write, camping out in the living room. First I wrote up a session log chronicling what happened in this session at D&D and mailed it off to the group. And now here I am, journaling in hopes of quieting my mind enough to get some rest. I've been up 20 hours, and was good about caffeine today (just the one cup of coffee at breakfast some time around 10 AM, no refills), so I should be ready to pass out even according to my body's innate non-24 circadian rhythm. But... mentally hyper. I just got back from D&D all jazzed up for some reason (well, I suspect the reason -- or part of it, anyway -- is because this particular session my character pulled off something AWESOME that I'm very excited about, and which will likely have interesting repercussions in the next session or two). But the tea or the writing or just the staying up an extra hour and a half seems to be doing the trick, I am starting to feel a bit sleepier.

I've been trying to find a method of keeping a task list that actually works for me (i.e. that I don't abandon in relatively short order because I'm hopelessly behind). My Remember the Milk task list is currently stalled out in April. :P For now I'm going to try a system I read on one of the blogs I follow (Zen Habits, maybe?) -- I set three "Most Important Tasks" for tomorrow. The idea is to just do three things every day -- do exactly those things, no more, no fewer, and when they're done, consider yourself done for the day. We'll see how that goes -- it feels like there are too many things I need to do to fit them all on a list of three, but that's part of the point. It's supposed to force you to make hard choices about what's really necessary and what you can do without. Monday's tasks are to order groceries (so I don't starve), work on/finish an editing project I committed to have done by Tuesday, and find a suitable job ad and send in an application. We shall see, we shall see.

Till then... I'm going to try to sleep.

Wed, Sep. 2nd, 2009, 06:13 am
Whiny Self-Indulgent Drivel About Being Single

Writing always suddenly gets difficult when I sit down to a blank page. When I get up and start to write, the thoughts that had been brazenly scurrying around in my brain while I tried to sleep scatter like rats startled by the sudden harshness of a switched-on light. I could try to sleep again, I suppose, but I imagine the thoughts I wanted to write down a few moments ago would just creep back out of whatever rat-holes they're hiding in now and go back to their bold, ratty activities.

It's late. So late, in fact, that technically it's now early. I'm not tired, but I don't feel especially coherent right now. My sleep schedule is borked, so here I am, writing.

I think it's been a long while since I posted whiny self-indulgent drivel about being single.Collapse )

Anyway, I think that's most of what's on my mind. It's been two hours since my last attempt at sleep, and I'm feeling tired now, so perhaps with these ratty thoughts rounded up and corralled in my LiveJournal, I'll be able to get some rest. Hope you all had a good night's sleep while I was typing away.

Fri, Aug. 21st, 2009, 08:09 am
An observation.

Life has sent me a few different situations lately in which it appears that the optimal course of action is "suck it up and deal". It looks like I'm supposed to be getting a lot of practice at sucking it up and dealing. To those of you who believe everything happens for a reason, I'm not especially looking forward to what might be around the corner that will require me to be good at this.

Also, I write the first sentence of this post more than 24 hours before I got around to finishing it.

Tue, Aug. 18th, 2009, 08:08 am
I encountered this quote today.

"Basically, I no longer work for anything but the sensation I have while working."
-John Gay, English poet & dramatist


I am green with envy. It seems likely that I will soon return to working to put food on the table.

If anyone knows someone who is hiring for programmer, web designer, or software QA work, please let me know.

ETA: This goes double if they're hiring a freelancer and not a regular employee.

Fri, Aug. 14th, 2009, 08:03 am
A snippet of lyrics...

"When I think back on all the crap I learned in high school,
It's a wonder I can think at all."
-Paul Simon, "Kodachrome"

Fri, Aug. 14th, 2009, 06:38 am
I am in an oversharey mood right now.

That, paradoxically, is all. 

Tue, Aug. 11th, 2009, 07:27 pm
On Workplaces

I think my time of self-unemployment has ended, and my time of regular unemployment is also rapidly coming to a close. It's been very educational, and I hope that I am able to do it again very soon. One thing that I learned was the importance of workplaces.

Having a workplace away from home is crucial for me. I was at my most productive when I went to Santa Clara Library every day to work on my projects. When I'm at home I just want to relax, and it's easy to give in to the temptation since all my books and games and so forth are here, but getting up and going somewhere to get things done helps me focus. Not just anywhere will do, though. I need a place which has certain traits:
  • Quiet enough. It has to be somewhere that I can concentrate on my projects without being distracted by loud noises or chatter. I'm not super-distractable, so an average coffee-house is generally sufficient for this.
  • Social enough. This is somewhat in conflict with the previous point, so there needs to be a balance. This was the one downfall of Santa Clara Library – after working there for several weeks, I started feeling isolated despite the presence of many other people there. There was no interaction, and it drove me nuts. I pretty much stopped going there after that. Despite my natural introversion, I need some amount of social interaction. It doesn't have to be a lot, but it needs to exist.
  • People with similar projects. Haven't tried this one yet, but I think it would help a LOT. And it's one of the major advantages of traditional employment. Having people around who are doing similar things, so that my socialization can be "on topic" would be helpful.
  • Electricity and wifi. Gotta be able to use the laptop for more than its two hour battery life, and get online since that's where a lot of my work takes place. I can do without the wi-fi if necessary, though, since I have cellular internet.
  • Non-cluttered. I need room to think.
Is there a place like this? A place open to the public where people can go to work on and discuss web design and programming projects of their own choosing (i.e. NOT what the boss told them to work on) on a daily basis? I know there are dev parties (like Super Happy Dev House), but those are generally only held monthly. I know we're introverts, but come on, people!

If this doesn't exist (which I don't think it does)... do you think it's worth creating?

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