Monday, February 23, 2009

Back from Cousinpalooza

Back from Cousinpalooza! Rockband was played, meat and bread and vegetables were eaten, the dog was petted and sympathetically coo'd over, the back of the legs were repeatedly shanked by the dog's cone, the walk was walked, the marshmallows were eaten and the Russian palace was puzzled together. And Alex dug holes. With spoons. Back in the day.

And now, some questions.

So if ____ were a bird, he/she would be…
1) an eagle
2) a crow
3) a sparrow
4) a vulture
5) a peacock
6) a chicken

If shoes began raining from the sky, ____ would…..

1) Scream.
2) Use the falling shoes as batting practice.
3) Take the shoes and sell them, only to discover the market was flooded.
4) Eat them.
5) Sleep through the event.
6) Dance among the shoes with an umbrella.

If ____ were to choose a number, that number would be….
1) 5
2) 3
3) 2
4) 6
5) 4
6) 1
7) Gravel

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Boskone 46

A SETI researcher leading the audience in a sing-along about the Drake Equation. Perhaps Boskone in a nutshell?

Boskone was fun! I hung out with my third and fourth cousins and family, met a lot of interesting people, and listened to some interesting lectures (ie, YA Fiction, DARPA's development of the Death Ray, SF fantasy artists work, etc).

Some snippets of thoughts and conversation:

* Mindful of who you rant about Watchmen to, whilst waiting for a panel. They might be a speaker on the panel, and then introduce themselves as a former editor at Vertigo.

* Why did I do a stupid dance in front of Bruce Coville? Why?

Me: "Oooh! That's a lovely red glaze on the ceramic!"
"Thanks! I got the clay from Neil's yard, he's got like a ton of it under his house."
Alice: "Neil who?"
"Neil Gaiman."

"Oh!.... You! -- You're the dude!"
(Gesturing at table full of Bruce Coville books) "The... dude!"
"Oh! Yes! Yes, I am the dude!"

* The impulsive and inane dancing came later.... unfortunately.


Below -- the kind of thing that goes on in the after party.

Florescent agar-agar jelly. No, actually, it's a kind of crystal. It... just really looks like agar-agar candy to me. Anyway, then people got into a scientific discussion of what influences the color in crystal.

Your final photo from Boskone.... a dog with boots!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Lab alarm

I plan to be at Boskone 46 next weekend. Actually, first I have to get my rollover membership from Anthony. And then I’m going to be there.

On other news, I set off a motion alarm in a lab last week. Or maybe it was the student in the connecting room who set off the alarm.

Anyway, the important thing was that the alarm was a practice alarm -- David B. had me set it up, as part of an exercise in what to do if I activated the lab's alarm by accident.

The unimportant thing, I suppose, was that David B. didn’t quite tell me I was setting up a motion alarm. Until I keyed in the last command, and the entire lab suddenly exploded with ear-breaking sirens and whooping noises.

(Eventually, after managing to stop the alarm, I deduced what had happened.)